Companies such as those in jewelry, electronics, building and autos want assurance that the minerals they buy are mined responsibly.  Civil society organizations and communities expect adherence to a standards system that is comprehensive, robust and accountable to all affected stakeholders.

IRMA seeks to drive positive change in industrial-scale mining using credible third-party certification: a tool that has been proven to deliver better social and environmental outcomes in industries such as agriculture, forestry and fishing.  IRMA offers the only third-party certification of industrial-scale mine sites for all mined materials that is governed equitably by the private sector, local communities, civil society, and workers.  It is the most comprehensive standard and is available now for mines all over the world.

Our independent, robust auditing occurs at the site of the mine and mines can become certified. IRMA does not certify mining companies.  However, a mining company can choose to commit to putting a percentage of their mines into the program, or achieve certification of all their mines, and make claims about that commitment and achievement.

Self-Assessment

A possible first step for mines is to conduct a self-assessment (view our webinar by going to the Resources page > Webinars)

Self-assessment allows you to see how your practices compare with the Standard for Responsible Mining.

Completing a self-assessment and sharing your commitment or score on the Responsible Mining Map are a powerful way to signal that you deliver on your promises.  Self-assessment is not required as a first step and some mines will choose to go straight to independent auditing.

Why self-assess?

  • Improve your mine site
  • Reassure buyers and clients
  • Improve engagement with communities
  • Prepare for independent, third-party auditing

 

Independent Certification

IRMA is the only multistakeholder-governed standards system that offers third-party independent auditing (certification) at the site of the industrial mine and for all mined materials (except energy fuels).

In mid-2019 we began our auditing program of mine sites against version 1.0 of the Standard for Responsible Mining.

IRMA meets mines where they are, at any place in their journey to achieve best-in-class certification.  Mine sites can start by meeting our set of critical requirements.  Some mines will go beyond and show they are meeting more of our best-in-class multi-stakeholder standard.

We emphasize continuous improvement, independently verify those steps in a mine’s journey towards full certification, and offer customer-facing claims along the way.

IRMA is working with SCS Global Services and ERM as its first audit program partners.  Both SCS and ERM have experience auditing social, environmental and technical issues at industrial-scale mines.

If mining companies are unsure whether their mines are ready for an independent audit, they are encouraged to start with a self-assessment through our ‘Mine Measure‘ tool and to publicly share their intentions and scores on the Responsible Mining Map.

For more information on independent certification, write to us at info@responsiblemining.net.

Purchasing Certified Materials

Buying mined materials that originate from mines engaged in IRMA gives value to companies that seek to offer a responsible value chain to their customers.  In 2019, more than 60 civil society organisations have come forward publicly and called for companies to source mined materials from mines that meet IRMA’s Standard for Responsible Mining.

As a first general step purchasers can demonstrate their commitment and make contact with mines working towards certification by getting on the Responsible Mining Map.  Purchasers can also join IRMA as a member, and make a commitment to sourcing from responsible mines.  They can then encourage their suppliers to engage with IRMA. Membership also offers many benefits including participation in our multi-stakeholder governance.  Purchasers receive tools to help them source from responsible mines and to help them create appropriate incentives for mines to enter the IRMA system.

Read more on how purchasers can engage in IRMA.

“Microsoft believes that fairly-applied global mining standards such as those outlined in the Standard for Responsible Mining are essential to helping solve labor, human rights, and environmental issues at the far reaches of industry’s supply chains. Making progress on these important and challenging issues will require the efforts and engagements of many, which is why we play an active role in collaborative initiatives like the Initiative for Responsible Mining Assurance.”
JOAN KRAJEWSKI
General Manager, Compliance and Safety, Microsoft