About This Report
New Gold’s 2015 Corporate Responsibility Report provides a review of our performance and a comprehensive summary of our achievements and challenges related to governance, health and safety, environmental management, and community engagement and development during the 2015 calendar year. A summary of this report is available in English and Spanish.
This report covers all sites under our direct management and excludes the El Morro project, in which New Gold had a 30% stake. El Morro is managed by the 70% owner, Goldcorp Inc. (“Goldcorp”), and New Gold sold its stake to Goldcorp in 2015. Tables and figures represent a compilation of information from all sites (other than El Morro) unless otherwise noted.
Financial results are audited annually and reported on a quarterly basis, in accordance with legal requirements for publicly traded companies. Please refer to New Gold’s Management’s Discussion and Analysis and Annual Financial Review, which are available on our website www.newgold.com. When appropriate, certain financial performance information is included in this report to reflect direct and indirect impacts of our activities in the communities where we operate. All dollar amounts are in U.S. dollars unless otherwise noted.
Every New Gold site follows company-wide principles and commitments regarding environmental and social responsibility as well as ethical behaviour. We have developed and fully implemented three internal management standards: Health and Safety, Environment, and Community Engagement and Development. These standards are based on best practices and international standards. In 2015, we added two new standards for incorporation into our internal management systems: Mine Closure and Water Stewardship.
Each standard specifies regular reviews including internal and external audits. These audits include verification of the Toward Sustainable Mining (TSM) protocols, which are part of our Management Standards. TSM verification in operations in Canada is a Mining Association of Canada membership requirement. At New Gold, all operations perform regular verification against TSM protocols irrespective of their location. Measuring performance through regular audits is an important way to ensure our standards are properly implemented and performance is continuously improved. Individual mines may also maintain site-specific policies and processes to ensure compliance with local regulations or other commitments.
Meeting a Global Standard for Reporting
This is our eighth sustainability report and second report developed according to the recently enhanced Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) G4 Guidelines. The GRI is an independent institution that sets voluntary guidelines for sustainability reporting. We believe that adhering to these guidelines demonstrates our commitment to transparency, clarity and comparability in reporting. The G4 Implementation Manual and the Mining and Metals Sector Disclosure have guided the preparation of this report, in accordance with the GRI G4 Guidelines – option Core. The GRI Content Index provides the list of general standard disclosures and performance indicators that we are reporting on this year and gives directions on where the data or information can be located in this report.
New Gold relies on an internal assurance review process to verify that the data reported by the mine sites for GRI indicators is accurate, consistent and in accordance with the standards set out in the G4 Guidelines. We have applied for the GRI Materiality Disclosures Service, which verifies that, at the time of publication, General Standard Disclosures G4-17 to G4-27 were located in both the Content Index and in the text of the final report.
This report is written for a broad range of communities of interest, including New Gold employees and their families, contractors, local Aboriginal communities, host community members, suppliers, environmental organizations, governments, the financial and investment communities, shareholders, warrant holders and bondholders.
To know and understand our communities of interest, we implement a range of methods to identify community groups, organizations and individuals, and to ensure proactive development of engagement strategies. This includes stakeholder mapping and analysis, and implementation of engagement activities such as meetings, workshops, site visits and open houses. Additionally, we regularly engage with our communities of interest through national and international organizations and initiatives, industry associations, as well as through our site and corporate feedback mechanisms such as our mailbox at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are vigilant in tracking how people and organizations are affected by our activities and understanding and addressing their concerns, and look for opportunities to address their interests. We seek to maintain open dialogues with all individuals and groups who express an interest in, or may potentially be affected by, our activities.
We invite comments and suggestions about our approach to social responsibility, as well as the content of this report, at email@example.com.
Identifying Material Topics (GRI G4-18)
The GRI identifies a wide range of topics that may be relevant to ensuring and measuring sustainability. According to the GRI, each organization is responsible for identifying the set of topics it considers “material” for its own operations and the level of compliance it seeks to achieve in the reporting period. Guidance is provided by the GRI’s G4 Sustainability Reporting Guidelines – Implementation Guide as well as AccountAbility’s Five-Part Materiality Test.
In 2015, we reassessed the selection of G4 material topics for New Gold, based on input from individual operations and projects, our corporate team, a media review and engagement with industry associations as well as other relevant organizations. The review of the materiality assessment conducted at each site was consolidated with a company-wide assessment performed at the corporate level. The resulting list of material topics was validated by the New Gold executive team and approved by the President and CEO.
For the purposes of this report, the criteria for determining materiality is whether the issue could significantly affect the long-term success of our business and/or is a priority for our communities of interest.
This report focuses on those topics that we identified as material across the company. Other topics are included to meet the needs of environmental, social and governance (ESG) analysts as well as the investment community who use our corporate responsibility reports for their assessments. However, these other topics may not be covered in this report to the same extent as the topics identified as material. Targets for material topics are inserted in our performance scorecards for the 2016 annual cycle. Nonetheless, goals for non-material topics may still be set internally and addressed in this report. All topics identified as material at the site level are regularly addressed in local communications and engagement activities.
The list of material topics for 2015 includes, in alphabetical order (GRI G4-19):
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Diversity and Equal Opportunity
Effluents and Waste
Training and Education
A table is available in the Appendix, which details the material topics, indicators and boundaries using the GRI G4 Framework, including links to the appropriate page on the online report. The list of material topics is updated regularly through engagement with our communities of interest. This assists us in designing and implementing initiatives aimed at continuous improvement in the identified areas.
In this, our eighth annual Corporate Responsibility Report, New Gold ratifies our commitment to transparent reporting of our performance. At New Gold, we view this transparency as essential for maintaining trust with our communities of interest, and to upholding our corporate reputation. Our annual performance targets provide us with goals to strive for and concrete measurement of our performance improvements. The targets are established annually based on the topics considered material for both New Gold and our communities of interest.
As in past years, our report expresses our dedication to conforming to recognized international standards for responsible corporate behaviour and endeavouring to find opportunities to innovate and improve performance. We are guided by the GRI G4 Guidelines, and we work to continually improve the scope, depth and transparency of our reporting.