Authors: Tubino, DS; Fonseca, MC


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Tubino, DS & Fonseca, MC 2011, 'Planning for successful mine closure – the earlier, the better', in AB Fourie, M Tibbett & A Beersing (eds), Mine Closure 2011: Proceedings of the Sixth International Conference on Mine Closure, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 139-143,

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This paper explores the role of a mining company during the planning process for mine closure in the socio-economic context. Several negative social and economic impacts may come about due to mine closure such as unemployment, emigration, and economic stagnation. Therefore, mining companies are increasingly seeking to address potential impacts before mine closure and decommissioning occurs by refining and executing their corporate social responsibility policies, adhering to government regulation and facilitating community engagement (mining employees, local institutions and civil society). While the dynamic among a mining company, community and government is complex, the case study that has been identified suggests that successful mine closure is possible when the mining company has fostered a continuous relationship between the government (municipal and regional) and the host community since the beginning of the mine’s life cycle. Securing a positive relationship from the beginning of a mine´s life cycle is essential to build ongoing and long-lasting institutional partnerships and strengthen the social capital that is necessary to prolong a positive legacy of mining such as economic and social development. Furthermore, it is in the interest of the mining company to engage in early mine closure planning in order to better secure a positive reputation, attain the social license to operate, and secure its competitive advantage in an increasingly globalised and competitive marketplace.

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