Management system implementation planning for a new gold mining operation


With new corporate requirements for a Sustainability Excellence Management System, and commitments to abide by numerous external obligations, such as the Mining Association of Canada’s Towards Sustainable Mining initiatives and the International Cyanide Management Code, Goldcorp-Éléonore’s new mining operations in northern Quebec needed a plan to meet expectations. EEM was retained to develop a site-specific management system to ensure the new facilities would operate in ways that minimize their environmental and social impacts.

Approach and Solution

The first step in the planning process was a thorough review of the requirements that the site operations needed to meet. This covered all levels, from the external commitments made by the corporation’s head office to the local commitments written into the Collaboration Agreement with the Cree Nation of Wemindji, the Grand Council of the Crees (of Eeyou Istchee) and the Cree Nation Government. The requirements were separated into management system requirements and operational requirements.
Next, a gap analysis was conducted in two stages. The first reviewed the site’s documented procedures and practices against the system requirements. The second stage involved a week-long site visit to gauge the actual use of the documented procedures and inventory other existing practices.
The gap analysis results were then used to frame the management system implementation in terms of a structure and an implementation plan. Four committees were set up and trained to take on the different aspects of the implementation: planning, operational control, support and continuous improvement. The system will be structured in accordance with the new ISO management systems standards.
A phased approach is also being taken as to which topics to address in the management system, starting with the core health & safety, environment, community relations and security requirements, but moving to incorporate questions of human rights, business ethics and social responsibility. The direction will be influenced by a concurrent preliminary materiality assessment with input from local stakeholders.


The mine site has a clear picture of the major milestones to be reached over the next two years as EEM continues to guide and support the implementation of the management system.

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