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Caring for Our Environment

At every New Gold site, we take a proactive risk management approach to safeguarding the environment and reducing our impacts. At every stage of a mine’s life cycle, we apply best practices in environmental management, guided by international standards, and comply with all relevant laws and regulations in the countries where we operate. From the earliest site investigations, we carry out comprehensive environmental studies to establish baseline measurements for flora, fauna, soil, air and water. As mining operations proceed, we work to minimize environmental impacts and maintain robust monitoring programs that include groundwater and air quality. We strive to minimize energy and water consumption, and reduce material consumption through recycling and reuse.

Performance in 2013

In 2013, we developed and began to implement our New Gold Environmental Management Standards, which are derived from several internationally recognized standards. At each operation, the new standards are being used to guide a site-specific Environmental Management System (EMS). The standards ensure that operations identify and manage environmental aspects; adopt a consistent approach to identifying and managing environmental risks; continuously improve through audits and assessments; and display a high level of environmental stewardship.

By the end of 2013, New Gold operations were 80% complete in aligning their EMS with the new standards. Full implementation of the New Gold Environmental Management Standards is expected by the end of 2014. We also formalized a Tailings, Leach Pad and Waste Rock Policy to comply with the Mining Association of Canada’s Towards Sustainable Mining protocol.

Peak Mines was awarded the 2013 Environmental Achievement Award at the Cobar Business Awards as a result of its lead and support for the Kultarr Project (Kultarr is an endangered marsupial found in area). In 2013 New Afton produced its first report of performance requirements under Towards Sustainable Mining, achieving exceptionally positive results in its first year of reporting.

Scorecard 4: Environmental Performance

2013 Targets
Performance
2014 Targets

Establish an automated incident recording and tracking system across all sites.

Achieved

An automated incident recording and tracking system has been established across all sites.

Perform root cause analysis on 10% of all incidents and take proactive initiative to reduce/eliminate root causes.

Establish an environmental committee at all operations, including representation from operational areas that reviews hazards, risks and significant incidents at least quarterly.

At all operations, provide training for 100% of significant environmental risks as defined by site’s risk assessment.

Continue to monitor and report water recycling and reuse.

Complete evaluation of the pilot project at Cerro San Pedro to utilize treated city water in leach piles as an alternative to groundwater.

Achieved

All sites continued to monitor and report water recycling and use.

Not Achieved

The full development of a pilot project at Cerro San Pedro to utilize treated city water in leach piles as an alternative to groundwater was put on standby given the focus on work required to progress certification under the International Cyanide Management Code.

Establish a detailed water balance and a Water Management Plan at all operations.

Achieve Towards Sustainable Mining Energy and GHG Management Level B in all operations.

Achieve ISO 50001 (Energy Management) compliance at New Afton.

Achieved

Towards Sustainable Mining Energy and GHG Management Level B was achieved in all operations.

New Afton: first mine in North America to obtain ISO 50001 certification, achieved in early 2014.

Determine baseline across major energy sources through metering and sub-metering where feasible.

Achieve Towards Sustainable Mining Energy and GHG Management Level B in all operations.

Achieved

Towards Sustainable Mining Energy and GHG Management Level B was achieved in all operations.

Initiated reporting to Carbon Disclosure Project. New Gold data was not received in time for publication.

Continue reporting to Carbon Disclosure Project.

Increase overall recycling across sites by 10%.

Achieved

35%increasein recycling of tires, paper, plastic and metals across the corporation

11.5%increasein recycling of oils and lubricants across the corporation

No target defined for 2014.

Complete the restoration of higher-risk historical mine shafts at Peak Mines to a safe, stable and nonpolluting state.

At Cerro San Pedro, reforest 70 hectares of land at Monte Caldera.

Achieved

The restoration of higher-risk historical mine shafts at Peak Mines was completed.

76hectares

reforested at Monte Caldera, at Cerro San Pedro

At Cerro San Pedro, reforest 75 hectares of land at Monte Caldera.

Initiate the development of a New Gold Integrated Closure Standard.