Operating in a Biodiversity Hotspot

Madagascar is a biodiversity-rich country with high levels of endemism (most of the plant and animal species occur nowhere else on Earth). Ambatovy’s Mine is located within a species-rich region of Madagascar at the southern end of the remaining Eastern Forest Corridor (see map). Madagascar is also one of the world’s poorest countries, in which local people are highly dependent on natural resources for their livelihood. These factors combine to create a challenging context for a large mining operation.

To meet this challenge, Ambatovy has developed interrelated environmental and social policies that aim to ensure no net loss, and preferably a net gain, of biodiversity while ensuring socioeconomic benefits for local populations.

Ambatovy’s environmental commitments

To deliver on these policies and offer outstanding environmental results, Ambatovy has and continues to:

  • Put in place adaptive, state-of-the-art environmental management plans to ensure compliance with the highest national and international standards throughout all of Ambatovy’s phases (Construction, Operations, and Closure);

  • Avoid, minimize, and mitigate environmental impacts and compensate for residual impacts through the implementation of a multi-faceted biodiversity offsets program;

  • Anticipate and manage environmental risks through stakeholder engagement, public information and consultation, transparent communication, and adaptive management to address emerging environmental issues.

Environmental Management Plan

As a responsible mining enterprise, Ambatovy adheres to stringent environmental standards including the Equator Principles, the World Bank Group’s IFC Performance Standards, and the principles of the Business and Biodiversity Offsets Program (BBOP). Ambatovy’s Environmental Management Plan (EMP) provides the framework that ensures that all issues identified during the Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) are addressed through appropriate mitigation and monitoring.

Ambatovy works in close collaboration with the Malagasy regulator, the National Environment Office (ONE, in French), which must approve all environmental plans for implementation. Mitigation measures, together with strict monitoring systems, ensure that impacts are minimized. Land mined by Ambatovy will be progressively reclaimed and planted with replacement forest to restore ecosystem services. Noise, air, water, soil quality, and biodiversity are monitored on an ongoing basis.

Additionally, a multi-component biodiversity offsets program that will achieve no net loss and possibly a net gain of biodiversity has and continues to be implemented. Click here for the Ambatovy BBOP case study (10MB).

Biodiversity Management System

As an integral part of the Environmental Management Plan, the Biodiversity Management System guides Ambatovy’s actions regarding flora, fauna, and aquatic resources. Click here for more information.