Responsible Mining Activities – Towards a sustainable inclusive economy

Organizer: Fabrice Collin, Abdelaziz Smouni
Format: Online


Mineral exploitation plays a significant part in economic and social development, especially amongst inter-tropical countries. According to the United Nations Industrial Development Organization, mineral production represents 24% of Africa’s GDP, 10 of Latin America’s and 20 of Asia’s. Africa alone holds 30% of the world’s mineral reserves. Given the known resources and their geographical location, the increasing global demand trends and the technological breakthrough in the metallurgical processing (hydrometallurgy for example), economic ores will remain a vital primary resource for many countries in the tropics and sub-tropics. Mineral extraction, however, leads to many societal risks, such as local environmental impacts on ecosystems, biodiversity loss, contaminated aquifers and soils, health disorders, risks of Dutch diseases, loss of social identity and social harmony, as well as global impacts (greenhouse gases effects). Those risks, that need to be more quantified, raise many concerns amongst scientists, governments, civil society and private operators. Since 2015, numerous large international agencies initiatives aim toward the fulfillment of the sustainable development goals (SDGs) in the 2030 agenda.

States, communities, civil societies and private sector must now face many challenges. A responsible approach all along the mining project life cycle must be developed, considering positive externalities and allowing to reduce negative impacts, restoration of degraded land and ecosystems, diversification by sustainable circular economy, build up together by the implied actors. The aim of the forum is to exchange between “South and North” countries actors to explore innovative actions in order to develop a responsible mining activity at global and local scale, from field to theoretical knowledge. Artisanal, semi-industrial, industrial mining activities and orphan mines are considered. More virtuous and responsible mining activity will be unavoidable to allow countries to valorize their resources into reserves in the next future, and obtain the support of the populations concerned in the lights of the development models of those countries.

Themes:Sustainable Solutions from the Global South