In its final year of operation, a gold mine located in the North Sulawesi Province of Indonesia operated by Newmont Minahasa Raya (PTNMR) became deeply embroiled in controversy over allegations of polluting the local Buyat Bay. Some local community members alleged that the operation’s submarine tailings had damaged waterways and marine life and negatively impacted their health. In 2007, Newmont initiated a global Community Relationships Review (CRR) as a result of a shareholder resolution at its Annual General Meeting in Denver. The CRR project initially focussed on five operating sites around the world. The Minahasa case study was added at the request of the independent Advisory Panel, with agreement from the Environment and Social Responsibility (ESR) Committee of the Newmont Board. The Minahasa case study differs from the other five cases because (a) it is in the closure monitoring rather than operational phase of its mine life, (b) it was heading towards closure when Newmont’s environment and social responsibility policies and standards were put in place, and (c) there is the possibility of multiple ongoing appeals in relation to the Minahasa litigation. this report addresses the following key questions:
- What was the background context to the Minahasa case study?
- How did individuals within Newmont experience the Minahasa crisis as it developed?
- What views are held within Newmont about why events unfolded as they did and whether/how things could have been handled differently by the company?
- What key organisational learnings stem from the Minahasa crisis that Newmont has taken or should still consider taking forward?
Kemp, D., Evans, R., Plavina, J. & Sharp, B. (2008). ‘Organisational Learnings from the Minahasa Case Study’, Newmont’s Global Community Relationships Review. Centre for Social Responsibility in Mining: Brisbane.