New ASPASA audit ensures newcomers comply with legislation

Nico Pienaar, director of ASPASA.
Nico Pienaar, director of ASPASA.

Buyers of new or existing surface mining operations can order a comprehensive audit of an operation to ensure it is reasonably within legal requirements for health, safety and environmental compliance.

The new audit is offered by surface mining industry association, ASPASA, and is a timely intervention to assist mine owners with detailed reports of conformance and outlines of licensing and documentation requirements for these operations. It is focused on the general condition of the site rather than business and financial processes.

“We have ongoing requests for this service which aligns the mine with strict legal requirements imposed on modern-day mines. It assists the mine to establish a baseline of current findings and establish a path to compliance,” says ASPASA director, Nico Pienaar.

He adds that the audit takes two days to complete and one day for the report to be compiled. The issues that are looked at cover a set list of issues, although more issues could be uncovered during the audit. Other topics such as trackless mobile machinery (TMM) could also be included in the two-day visit.

Topics covered and documentation required includes mining licence / new order mining right, environmental performance assessments (EMPR), water user authorisation / licence, social labour plan (SLP), blasting records, baseline risk assessment, performance assessment, rehabilitation plans, future forum constitution and minutes, management reviews, record of community engagements, mine plans, royalties, life cycle analysis (LCA) and annual mine survey, noise and dust survey reports, alien vegetation surveys and control programmes, occupational hygiene reports among others and covering every aspect of the mines operation.

“This audit has been designed to assist new owners of a mine or quarry, but can equally be used by existing operators to determine a baseline for their operation and to plan for future growth and development. At the conclusion of the audit our assessors will treat all information as confidential and will only share it with the management of the operation as stipulated.”

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