Environment, Social Responsibility and Good Governance (ESG) in Action Subtitle: Midas Gold builds a strong foundation through ESG
From its beginning, Midas Gold Corp. and its Idaho based subsidiary, Midas Gold Idaho Inc. (collectively “Midas Gold”), has made the environment, social responsibility and good governance (ESG) a priority and the foundation of everything we do. Now, we are taking steps to more formally define these aspects of the company, demonstrate these commitments through our actions and report on them regularly.
ESG Policy – Midas Gold has a formal ESG policy, which can be found here https://www.midasgoldcorp.com/site/assets/files/2262/2019-mgc-esg-policy.pdf.
Below is a summary of those actions and a link to their respective documents:
ENVIRONMENT: From designing the Stibnite Gold Project to restore the site after 100 years of legacy mining impacts to working with local students to plant trees, our commitment to the environment runs deep.
- At Stibnite, we have invested in sustainable practices to help the legacy site where we can. For example, we installed solar panels to produce much of our power generation needs on site and have planted nearly 60,000 trees to help reduce erosion and stabilize habitat.
- Prefeasibility Study (“PFS”) commitments – In 2014 (as amended in 2019), Midas Gold published the PFS in which it set out its Key Considerations (Section 1.1), and outlined its mitigation and conservation principles (Section 20.5), as well as its conservation strategy and components (Section 20.6). Given the prescriptive content of such reports, there is limited opportunity to layout ESG related matters. The full PFS can be downloaded here https://midasgoldcorp.com/site/assets/files/2119/amended_techreport.pdf.
- Plan of Restoration & Operations (“PRO”) – In 2016, Midas Gold Idaho filed its plan of operations, as defined by the US Forest Service, which we renamed as the Plan of Restoration and Operations to better reflect our objectives. This document more comprehensively sets out our ESG principles and objectives. The Executive Summary of the PRO can be found here https://midasgoldidaho.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/2016-09-21-Stibnite-Gold-PRO-Executive-Summary.pdf) and summarizes Midas Gold’s core values and conservation guidance principles (Section ES.4), Restoration and Mitigation plans (Section ES.7), restoration and mitigation principles (Section ES.8), restoration and reclamation objectives (Section ES.19).
SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY: Transparency, direct communication and involvement in our region forms the basis of our community outreach programs and has helped us build a better project through community input and trust.
- Midas Gold is a purpose driven company and we’ve taken a holistic approach to designing the Stibnite Gold Project and developing relationships. Midas Gold Corp. CEO Stephen Quin described this approach in the following blog on the company website: https://midasgoldidaho.com/news/purpose-driven-company/.
- Transparency is a key value in social responsibility. Over the last few years, Midas Gold Idaho has committed itself to transparency through providing public tours of the site. These tours are open to any member of the public and focus on the current conditions of the site and our plans to use mining as a vehicle for restoration. Over 900 people have taken a tour in the last two years. We also created a video tour https://youtu.be/s4rFanf9prA for those who can’t make it all the way to Stibnite.
- Communicating regularly with the community to build awareness and dialogue is an essential part of building trust and stakeholder partnerships. Midas Gold Idaho has worked diligently to provide information to the public via our website www.midasgoldidaho.com where we post factual information in the “Resource Library” with brief comments and links to technical information.
- In order to help answer community questions and create a culture of open, civil, dialogue, Midas Gold Idaho holds monthly “office hours” where people can drop into our local office during fixed hours and ask questions to our team of experts about the project. Times for these are posted on social media and in the local paper. See https://midasgoldidaho.com/events/midas-gold-office-hours-10/.
- Midas Gold Idaho has an open-door policy and honors all requests to meet with groups, whether supportive or opposed, across the state to listen, gather feedback and answer questions. Annually, our community relations team spends more than 1,700 hours a year in direct outreach activities.
- Midas Gold has also been building a coalition of engaged citizens to inform them about the project in advance of the US Forest Service public comment period, so there are people well positioned and informed able to submit comments. See the coalition members here https://supportstibnite.com/ with numbers approaching 2,000.
- Accountability means we are responsible for our actions and follow through on our commitments. That is why we entered into a community agreement with eight local villages, cities and counties. he agreement establishes a long-term basis for communication and transparency with community leaders and binds the operating company to a mechanism for community feedback and input throughout the life of the project. For more details, see https://midasgoldidaho.com/community-agreement/.
- The Community Agreement established the Stibnite Advisory Council (“SAC”) as a mechanism for community communication and input through the life of the project. Each community appoints a representative to serve on the SAC along with a representative from Midas Gold Idaho and Midas Gold Corp. Members meet monthly to discuss matters of interest to the communities, discuss areas of opportunity or coordination, request presentations from Midas Gold Idaho or others about aspects of the project, etc. Meetings are open to the public and minutes are published and posted online. See https://midasgoldidaho.com/resource-library-stibnite-advisory-council/ and http://stibniteadvisorycouncil.com/ for more information.
- The Community Agreement also established the Stibnite Foundation, a charitable foundation funded by defined contributions from Midas Gold. The board is comprised of members of the local communities and a representative from Midas Gold Idaho and Midas Gold Corp. The Foundation board will make community grants on an annual basis and provides a means for local communities determine how the foundation benefits their communities. The Foundation’s website can be found here http://stibnitefoundation.com/.
- Sustainability is also about the next generation. That is why, we’ve dedicated our Community Education Outreach position to working with local schools to support STEM education programs. Each year, our community education program supports students in classrooms and after school programs build a love for science and the natural world through lesson plans and classroom resources.
- Over the past many years, our consistent community outreach has helped us build strong, bipartisan support in the state legislature, which culminated in a Joint House Resolution cosponsored by the leadership of both parties in both houses of the state legislature supporting the project moving forward. https://legislature.idaho.gov/sessioninfo/2018/legislation/hjm010/
- With respect to Federally recognized Indian Tribes, three are being consulted under the National Environmental Policy Act review process and Midas Gold continues to work with and engage with the Tribes and stakeholders willing to meet.
GOOD GOVERNANCE: There is no replacement for doing the right thing. We focus on making sure that we meet or exceed all regulatory requirements and have instilled good governance practices into our business.
- Midas Gold’s employees, directors and consultants are required to adhere to a strong set of corporate policies to ensure best practices in every aspect of the Company’s business. Employees and directors of the Company are required to participate in a yearly training session on the policies and provide sign of that they have read, understand and agree to abide by the policies of Midas Gold. Please click each of the following links to read the Midas Gold Policies:
- Midas Gold Idaho takes its responsibilities for good governance and environmental protection seriously, and recently strongly supported an Idaho mining industry led effort to modernize Idaho’s financial assurance regulations, which effort let to new legislation being passed in early 2019 and regulations currently in process of being established. This updated legislation will result in significantly enhanced approaches to financial assurance to ensure mine sites are fully restored no matter what the outcome. This initiative increases costs and burden to the industry, but Midas Gold is committed to the initiative and believe it is the right thing to do.
- Midas Gold Idaho has a majority of independent local directors that include a former mayor of McCall, county commissioners, and leading citizens. See the bios of the directors here https://midasgoldidaho.com/about/. This provides transparency and accountability to the local communities.