Approach, Goals and Standards

Because of their extraordinary biodiversity and of how they contain outstanding representation of on-going ecological and biological processes in the evolution of ecosystems and species, the Guinean and Ivoirian Nimba Mountains Strict Nature Reserves (SNRs) were inscribed as the Mount Nimba Natural World Heritage Site. In Guinea, the Guinean SNR is also a core area of the Nimba Mountains Biosphere Reserve. The Nimba mining concession is adjacent to the SNR.

Environmental Requirements for SMFG

SMFG complies strictly with Guinean legal requirements for strict nature reserves, as well as with all relevant Guinean environmental legislation concerning pollution, protection of fauna and flora, environmental and social impact assessment, and related topics.

Sustainable Development: the Key to Conservation

  • Threats

    SMFG’s Project is proposed in an area of extreme poverty where most of the population practices subsistence-style economic activities like slash-and-burn agriculture, hunting, grazing and tree-cutting for fuel and construction. Wildfires set by villagers frequently escape and burn the Mount Nimba WHS. In this context, with or without mining in an enclave at the northern end of the range, subsistence pressures represent the chronic and universal threats to the Nimba Mountains’ unique biodiversity.

  • The ESIA

    The Project’s ESIA looks broadly and deeply at not only the proposed mine’s direct impacts, but at its indirect impacts and the broader context. It characterises the region’s socio-economic and cultural contexts, and local people’s dependencies on and management of natural resources. It assesses potential impact ‘outside the fence’ at the landscape level from potential population influx.

  • Influx Management

    SMFG is therefore designing measures to discourage people from moving close to the Project in search of opportunities. For example, it will spread its workforce through shuttles and dispersed housing, move public relations, procurement and hiring to the company’s office in Lola City, and encourage alternative economic opportunities across Lola Prefecture.

Sustainable Livelihoods

Sustainable Livelihoods

Another key activity is SMFG’s support to sustainable livelihoods in the Buffer Zone around the Mount Nimba WHS so this area genuinely achieves the desired protective-buffer effect.