We make sustained efforts to be a positive societal force amongst the nearby local communities. This includes ongoing consultation with communities on the various aspects of our operations.
Bisha Mine, State of Eritrea
Nevsun has embarked on a number of programs with the community and the local, regional and central government to ensure that the benefits of Bisha are widespread. We adopted the IFC Social and Environmental Performance Standards and developed our management plans accordingly. The plans have been subject to review by country hosts and by international bankers as part of their due diligence when considering funding for development of the Bisha Mine. We have since implemented the social and environmental plans and have subsequently had them audited by an independent third-party. We plan to upgrade our management plans and processes by ensuring alignment to the 2012 International Finance Corporation (IFC) Performance Standards for Social and Environmental Sustainability. Staff training and engagement with local authorities, as well as significant employment from both local and other in-country sources, are key elements of our social and environmental management. Our department heads for both Human Resources and Environment are experienced professionals with a solid understanding of local requirements as well as IFC Performance Standards.
Despite the low population in the immediate area of Bisha, we are committed to building relations with the five nearby villages located within 30 kilometers of the Mine. Since the beginning of 2004, the goal has been to ensure adequate information is provided to affected people in a timely manner, particularly among local communities near Bisha.
Community Assistance Plan
Nevsun developed a Community Assistance Plan (CAP) designed to address the community's socio-economic needs while benefitting the development and operation of the Bisha Mine. CAP contributes beyond direct mining activities, and provides the basis for enhancement of social and economic well-being amongst the host communities in which we operate.
CAP provides materials and technical expertise for a number of infrastructure projects, including:
- Enhanced local transportation routes
- Improved sanitation facilities
- Increased supply of safe drinking water, and
- Improved wells, piping, and diversion channels
Monies were approved in 2014 for projects in 2015, focusing on enhancing local irrigation and food supply through improved infrastructure to harness local ground water supplies for the nearby communities.