The Copper Mark, the assurance framework to promote responsible practices and demonstrate the copper industry’s contribution to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, has published its first Annual Report, covering the period of December 2019 to April 2021. The report marks an important milestone for the Copper Mark, which continues to expand its organisational capacity for promoting responsible copper production.
The report highlights that, in its first year of activity and despite a challenging operating environment due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Copper Mark welcomed 17 mining, smelting or refining sites in its assurance framework – exceeding the organisation’s expectations. The high levels of early adoption underline the copper industry’s commitment to responsible practices. The Copper Mark also welcomed six partners from the automotive, electronics and copper manufacturing industries in its first year of operations, building a strong market signal to encourage responsible production practices throughout the copper value chain.
The Copper Mark is designed to build upon existing initiatives and standards to drive efficiencies and reduce duplication of efforts. Since its inception, it has collaborated closely with the International Copper Association, the Responsible Minerals Initiative, the London Metals Exchange and others to further promote and recognise responsible production. These partnerships were supplemented by over 200 meetings with individuals and organisations in the copper value chain, as well as a number of Copper Mark-hosted events and webinars throughout the year which reached over 500 stakeholders.
The Copper Mark’s report draws out a number of opportunities for improvement for its participants – particularly around implementing robust mineral supply chain due diligence processes. A long-standing expectation in the industries of tin, tantalum, tungsten, gold and most recently cobalt, supply chain due diligence will be required for any copper producers with registered LME brands by 2023, resulting in increased focus on this topic within the copper industry.
Michèle Brülhart, Executive Director of the Copper Mark, said:
“In its first year of operations, the Copper Mark has taken significant steps to promote responsible and sustainable copper production, securing broad stakeholder engagement from across the copper supply chain. Copper is fundamental to the clean energy transition and over the course of the next twelve months we will look to further strengthen our foundations ensuring that the Copper Mark is recognised as a credible assurance framework and its participants as responsible producers of copper.”