ICMI Proposes Changes to International Cyanide Management Code Signatory and Certification Requirements

The International Cyanide Management Institute (ICMI) today proposed a number of changes to the signatory and certification requirements of the International Cyanide Management Code for the Manufacture, Transport and Use of Cyanide in the Production of Gold (Cyanide Code). ICMI seeks comment from Cyanide Code stakeholders before taking final action.

ICMI’s Board of Directors has identified a number of modifications to the administrative provisions of the Cyanide Code and its implementing documents that would clarify the requirements with respect to companies becoming signatories and maintaining their signatory status. The proposed changes also seek to encourage non-compliant operations to remain in the program while they correct their deficiencies so they may publicly demonstrate their progress and subsequent compliance with the program. The proposed changes are summarized below.

Please click this link to view the proposed revisions to the Cyanide Code, as well as a new Signatory and Certification Process that would replace the “Certification Process” flow chart and description currently on the Cyanide Code website under “Becoming a Signatory.” The proposed Signatory and Certification Process compiles the current procedures and requirements for companies becoming Cyanide Code signatories and having their operations certified under the program and the new procedures and requirements being proposed today.

Summary of Proposed Changes

Procedures allowing non-compliant operations to correct their deficiencies and achieve certification within the transparent framework of the Cyanide Code program:
The changes proposed to the Cyanide Code and the new procedures that would be included in a revised Signatory and Certification Process webpage expand the options available to a signatory if one of the operations it designated for certification does not comply with the Cyanide Code’s requirements. Under the proposal, operations found in non-compliance with a Standard of Practice (or Transport or Production Practice, as applicable) during a certification audit, as well as those that fail to meet a certification audit or Corrective Action Plan deadline, can remain in the program in “non-compliant” status while correcting their deficiencies and working to achieve compliance. These non-compliant operations would be able to publicly demonstrate their commitment to achieving best practice for management of cyanide and their progress in achieving Cyanide Code compliance by posting the results of annual internal audits on the Cyanide Code website for review by stakeholders until such time that they are audited for compliance by a qualified, independent third-party auditor. However, the changes do not limit or affect a signatory’s ability to withdraw operations from the program at any time and for any reason.

Pathways for signatory companies and/or operations to return to the Cyanide Code program after voluntarily withdrawing or being terminated:
The Cyanide Code has no procedures regarding signatory companies that seek re-admittance to the program after having withdrawn voluntarily or being terminated from participation.  Similarly, there are no existing procedures for certification of operations that were previously certified or designated for certification but subsequently were withdrawn. The new procedures in the proposed Signatory and Certification Process webpage establish criteria for re-admittance to the program that are dependent on the certification status of the signatory’s operations at the time it left the Cyanide Code program.

3.   Temporarily inactive operations:

The proposal also includes procedures by which operations that have temporarily suspended gold production, cyanide manufacturing or cyanide transportation activities (e.g., due to economic conditions) can remain in the program during temporary closure and then be certified or recertified once they return to active operations.

4.   Additional revisions to the Cyanide Code:

The proposal also includes additional revisions to the Cyanide Code that are intended to improve the document’s organization and structure and clarify existing requirements.

ICMI believes that the proposed changes are positive steps in the evolution of the Cyanide Code that will reduce risks to workers, communities and the environment by encouraging non-compliant operations to improve their cyanide management practices within a structured framework that is transparent to stakeholders.

ICMI solicits input from Cyanide Code stakeholders on the proposed changes to the program. Stakeholders wishing to express their views are requested to provide written comments to ICMI Executive Vice President Norm Greenwald at [email protected] by November 14, 2014. Final action on the proposed changes will be announced after its Board of Directors has considered stakeholder comments.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014