ESG risks to global platinum supply: A case study of Mogalakwena Mine, South Africa

Type Journal Article - Resources Policy
Title ESG risks to global platinum supply: A case study of Mogalakwena Mine, South Africa
Volume 85
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2023
Page numbers 104054
Global demand for metals is expected to continue to grow significantly to 2050, partly driven by the need for climate change mitigation measures that require energy transition metals including platinum group metals (PGMs). The environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks of mining these metals are seldom acknowledged in energy transition scenarios and pose a risk to future metal supply. Multiple ESG drivers at different scales create direct and indirect pressures and risks to a specific mine site and their interactions across scales create complex system dynamics. Although mining companies identify ESG factors as their biggest risks (and opportunities), interdisciplinary mining research is in its infancy and ESG factors are often oversimplified or overlooked. While global studies are important for providing an overview of the industry, and highlighting trends and patterns, they cannot communicate the complexity found at the local scale. This paper describes ESG risks, opportunities, and impacts across nine dimensions (water, energy, biodiversity, waste, air quality, community, social vulnerability, land use, and governance) for Anglo American Platinum’s Mogalakwena PGM mine in South Africa. It provides insight into a developing country African context and an in-depth view of the complex ESG risks around PGM mining in South Africa. Given South Africa hosts 91% of global PGM resources, understanding and addressing these ESG risks is critical for ensuring long-term PGM supply and enabling a just energy transition.

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