Mining Industry Responses to
Environmental and Social Issues
Globalization and sustainable development have become agents of change for society at large, including the nonferrous metals industry. They bring both new investment opportunities and raised public expectations about the role of corporations in the economic and social fabric of society. The first part of this chapter situates the nonferrous metals industry in the context of recent international developments and describes changes in corporate culture that are taking place in response to new world circumstances. The second part introduces the International Council on Metals and the Environment (ICME) and describes its work and that of its member companies in promoting environmentally and socially sustainable economic development in the field of nonferrous metals. (The various principles promoted and activities undertaken are of equal relevance to both industrialized and developing countries.)
Globalization is changing the world's way of doing business. Centrally planned economies are being replaced by market-based economies and democratic structures. Many countries that previously spurned foreign investment now seek it to stimulate their economies. Throughout the world, barriers to the movement of capital, trade, people, goods, and services are coming down. Globalization provides industry with a wealth of business opportunities and a more secure investment climate.