Summary of updated findings
Exxaro’s 2015 Integrated Annual Report does not deal specifically with environmental issues. All environmental issues are contained within the separate “Supplementary Report”. In this report, Exxaro describes its “lowlights” for the year as:
- Delays in obtaining environmental licences for new projects such as Glisa water treatment plant.
- Delays in finalising appeals lodged against some projects such as Thabametsi and Belfast.1
Exxaro’s 2015 Integrated Annual Report refers to the Thabametsi and Belfast projects, in each case making a cursory reference to the serious challenges to these projects on environmental grounds. The way in which Exxaro refers to these challenges does not provide investors or potential investors with an accurate picture of the status of the applications for approval of these operations, details of which are provided here in the section relating to Exxaro’s Environmental non-compliances reported by the media, affected communities and NGOs.
At Exxaro’s Tshikondeni mine, which stopped operations at the end of 2014, affected communities have raised serious concerns about the environmental impacts of the mine, as well as alleged failures to comply with rehabilitation and closure obligations. Exxaro refused to provide a copy of the Social and Labour Plan to the community, in response to a PAIA request by the CER on behalf of community members. Exxaro states that the SLP “contains some information regarded as confidential”.
The CER maintains that this is an unacceptable position. There is no valid reason to keep a Social and Labour Plan secret from the very people whose lives it purports to improve.
- Exxaro Supplementary Report 2015, at p140.