Social License to
Operate:
do mining companies pursue
this concept in Sweden?

Håkan Tarras-Wahlberg
- Swedish Geological ...
What is meant by ”SLO”?
 Origins in western (Anglo-American) Mining

Industry
 Example of definition (miningfacts.org):
...
This presentation:
 What mining companies may do to gain SLO
 Why then?
 Some research results (from Sweden)

 Conclud...
How obtain ”SLO”?
 Abide by ”hard law”, in addition:
 Following ”soft laws” (ICCM, OECD, WB, EITI,









SveMin...
Why do more:
negative public opinion
Why do more:
the main issues of concern
87

Reducing environmental impacts

84
83

Improving community relations

72
63

U...
Issues of concern - Sweden
Some research, then:
 What do mining companies in Sweden do to
gain a Social Licence to Operate ?
• Completed: study of c...
Why focus on permitting
process:
Scope & expectations of EIA
Results - Sweden:
Social license to mine in Sweden: do companies go the extra mile to gain
community acceptance?

 Establ...
Results - Sweden:
Results - Sweden:
Is CSR the solution then?
LonMin, South Africa:
”Best in class”

” Ten years of
Sustainable
Development
Reports…. a narrat...
But, who should do what?
Early 1900s:
”LKAB does
everything”

2013:
”LKAB should
do more”
What should mining companies do
(in Sweden)?
 Mine and explore for minerals, reponsibly
 Create (local ) work & business...
Concluding thoughts:
 Swedish mining companies – beginners at CSR.
Does that make them irresponsible or bad?
 Results & ...
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Social license to operate - do mining companies pursue this concept inSweden?

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Mining On Top: Stockholm 2013
26-27 Nov 2013

Social license to operate - do mining companies pursue this concept inSweden? – Dr Håkan Tarras-Wahlberg, Swedish Geological; Managing Director

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Social license to operate - do mining companies pursue this concept inSweden?

  1. 1. Social License to Operate: do mining companies pursue this concept in Sweden? Håkan Tarras-Wahlberg - Swedish Geological AB - Stockholm School of Economics Institue for Research
  2. 2. What is meant by ”SLO”?  Origins in western (Anglo-American) Mining Industry  Example of definition (miningfacts.org): ”SLO refers to the acceptance within local communities of both mining companies and their projects…… The credibility of mining companies is based on mutual respect, honesty, open dialogue, transparency, timely responses to community concerns, information disclosure, and constancy and predictability in the companies’ ethical behavior. Obtaining an SLO is essential for reducing the risks of social conflicts and for enhancing a company’s reputation”.  Note, SLO ≠ Free Prior & Informed Consent (FPIC)
  3. 3. This presentation:  What mining companies may do to gain SLO  Why then?  Some research results (from Sweden)  Concluding quastion & thoughts
  4. 4. How obtain ”SLO”?  Abide by ”hard law”, in addition:  Following ”soft laws” (ICCM, OECD, WB, EITI,       SveMin etc.) Create local work & business opportunities Initiatives for transparent disclosure Local agreements (e.g. Impact Benefit Agreements) Provision of information / educative efforts Philantropy CSR & Co C
  5. 5. Why do more: negative public opinion
  6. 6. Why do more: the main issues of concern 87 Reducing environmental impacts 84 83 Improving community relations 72 63 Using, reusing and disposing of materials responsibly 65 62 Improving its approach to health and safety 56 55 Reducing CO2 emissions that contribute to climate change Improving revenue management and transparency 2007 2010 67 55 43
  7. 7. Issues of concern - Sweden
  8. 8. Some research, then:  What do mining companies in Sweden do to gain a Social Licence to Operate ? • Completed: study of choices made by companies in applying for mining licenses (-2012) • Later, case study (to be selected) • Complementary case studies: in South Africa (ongoing); and Australia (to be selected)
  9. 9. Why focus on permitting process: Scope & expectations of EIA
  10. 10. Results - Sweden: Social license to mine in Sweden: do companies go the extra mile to gain community acceptance?  Established mining companies: - no more than necessary  New mining and exploration companies: - more than legally required  In spite of this: - The established companies accepted; new ones resisted
  11. 11. Results - Sweden:
  12. 12. Results - Sweden:
  13. 13. Is CSR the solution then? LonMin, South Africa: ”Best in class” ” Ten years of Sustainable Development Reports…. a narrative of broken promises and worthless commitments to improve” Yanacocha, Peru: ”Corporate Social Responsibility distinction” ”Conga no va”
  14. 14. But, who should do what? Early 1900s: ”LKAB does everything” 2013: ”LKAB should do more”
  15. 15. What should mining companies do (in Sweden)?  Mine and explore for minerals, reponsibly  Create (local ) work & business opportunities  Pay taxes, abide by laws  Consult & disclose  Provide information / educate What else do you think they should do?
  16. 16. Concluding thoughts:  Swedish mining companies – beginners at CSR. Does that make them irresponsible or bad?  Results & efficiency of CSR in mining, in many places contested.  Swedish companies have become alerted to the need for CSR by influences from abroad.  How well does CSR fit in a Nordic, welfare state based context ?  Is there anything in the Swedish experiences that can be usefully applied elsewhere?

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