Sustainable water management and improved corporate reporting in mining

Stephen A. Northey, Gavin M. Mudd, Tim T. Werner, Nawshad Haque, Mohan Yellishetty

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


The advent of corporate sustainability reporting and water accounting standards has resulted in increased disclosure of water use by mining companies. However, there has been limited compilation and analysis of these disclosures. To address this, we compiled a database of 8314 data points from 359 mining company reports, classified according to mining industry water accounting guidelines. The quality of disclosures is shown to have improved considerably over time. Although, opportunities still exist to improve reporting practices, such as by ensuring that all relevant water flows are reported and to explicitly state non-existent flows (e.g. discharges). Initial data analysis reveals considerable variability in water withdrawals, use efficiency and discharges between mining operations. Further work to improve industry coverage and to analyse the influence of mine specific factors such as ore processing methods and local climate will provide insights into the interactions of mining and water resources at a global scale.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100104
Number of pages20
JournalWater Resources and Industry
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2019


  • Corporate sustainability reporting
  • Mining
  • Water consumption
  • Water discharge
  • Water recycling
  • Water withdrawals

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