BELO HORIZONTE, Brazil (Reuters) – New safety standards being drawn up by a global mining industry panel will include rules to better define management accountability after Vale SA’s (VALE3.SA) January tailings dam disaster, a top industry official said on Wednesday.
The governance standards would help ensure independent reviews of dams and adequate disclosure of risks, said Tom Butler, president of the International Council on Mining and Metals.
“The engineers know what they’re doing with these things but the implementation and the management and the change management, that all involves humans,” Butler told Reuters in an interview in Brazil.
“Therefore it involves governance and that’s where there’s potential for things to go wrong if the governance is weak or the right hand is not talking to the left.”
A draft version “is almost ready to go out” and is expected by late September or early October, Butler had earlier told a mining conference in Belo Horizonte, about 20 miles (30 km) from the site of January’s disaster.