About This Report
This, our sixth annual Sustainability Report, is a comprehensive summary of New Gold’s achievements and challenges in health and safety, environmental management and community engagement and development during the 2013 calendar year. A summary of this report is available both in English and Spanish.
Since the publication of our last Sustainability Report on May 1, 2013, New Gold has grown significantly as a result of the acquisition of Rainy River Resources Ltd. Rainy River is an advanced-stage gold project in north-western Ontario. Following the acquisition, New Gold continued the advancement of the project’s feasibility study, which was completed in early 2014.
This report covers the assets illustrated in the map of our properties, except for the El Morro project, which is managed by our partner Goldcorp Inc. Tables and figures are a compilation of information from across our sites unless noted. Given the recent acquisition of the Rainy River project, for this project, only data related to economic values generated and distributed, workforce size, and health and safety statistics of this project is included.
As a public company, our financial results are audited annually and reported on a regular basis. This report does not emphasize corporate economic performance, which is reported in New Gold’s Management’s Discussion and Analysis and Annual Financial Review, available on our website at www.newgold.com.
Each New Gold operation follows company-wide principles and commitments regarding environmental and social responsibility as well as ethical behaviour. They also have their own policies and procedures, and work within local regulations. Some of our mining operations also produce their own annual sustainability report for their local communities of interest.
An internal assurance review process verifies that the data reported by the mine sites for GRI indicators is accurate, consistent and in accordance with the standards set out in the GRI 3.1 Guidelines. We have not sought external assurance of this report. Figures have not been externally audited.
All currency is in United States dollars (US$) unless otherwise noted.
Meeting a Global Standard for Reporting
This report complies with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) standards 3.1 Level B, Mining and Metals Sector Supplement. The GRI Index, found here, identifies the fully reported GRI Performance Indicators and where the relevant content may be found. We have received a statement from GRI confirming that this report fulfills the requirement of Application Level B.
The GRI is an independent institution that sets voluntary guidelines for sustainability reporting. We believe that adhering to its guidelines demonstrates our commitment to transparency, clarity and comparability in reporting. In 2013, GRI released a revised G4 standard, and we have begun to work toward reporting in accordance with G4 – Core. We plan to be compliant with the new standard in two years.
Engaging with Our Communities of Interest
This report aims to provide a balanced review of our 2013 social responsibility performance. It is written for a broad range of stakeholders or “communities of interest”, including New Gold employees and their families, contractors, Indigenous peoples, host community members, suppliers, non-governmental organizations, governments, the financial community, the media, shareholders, warrant holders and bondholders.
To identify and engage with our communities of interest, we apply various techniques, including stakeholder mapping and analysis and engagement activities, including meetings, workshops, site visits and community visits. At the corporate level, we also regularly engage with communities of interest through international organizations and initiatives, joint development partners, and industry associations, as well as through our feedback mailbox firstname.lastname@example.org.
We seek to identify how our communities of interest are affected by our activities, and to understand and address their concerns and interests. We maintain open dialogue with individuals and groups who express an interest in our work.
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
At New Gold, we apply a systematic process to identify material topics. For the purposes of this report, we regard our material topics as those that may affect the long-term success of our business as well as those that may influence the perception of our communities of interest. We are guided by the Global Reporting Initiative’s Technical Protocol − Applying the Report Content Principles as well as AccountAbility’s Five-Part Materiality Test. During 2013, relevant topics to our communities were identified through engagement activities at the operations, projects and head offices, feedback mechanisms, a media review and engagement with industry associations and other relevant organizations. A materiality assessment considering various topics’ significance to communities of interest as well as significance to the organization was conducted at each site and involved the participation of a variety of functional areas. These assessments complement and validate the materiality assessment conducted at the corporate level.
In this report, we have aimed to address all topics that have been identified as material across the Company. Other topics, which were identified as material at the site level, but were not determined to be material to the organization as a whole, are addressed in individual sites’ sustainability reports, or through other local communications and engagement activities.
The following is an alphabetical list of the material topics for 2013, prioritized and validated through our process:
- Anti-corruption and ethics
- Climate change, energy and greenhouse gas emissions
- Community engagement
- Community development and community investments
- Environmental management and stewardship
- Labour practices
- Local economic benefits
- Materials stewardship particularly cyanide management
- Occupational health and safety performance
- Reclamation and closure planning
- Regulatory compliance
- Water use and quality
We are committed to continue engaging with communities of interest and to update the list of material topics for future reports. This will assist us in designing and implementing initiatives aimed at continuous improvement in these areas.