This guidance focuses on an approach that takes account of emerging health impact assessment (HIA) methodology and the needs of the mining and metals sector. It describes a flexible and holistic approach that can easily be modified to take account of the needs and requirements of mining and metals companies and their projects.
- All communities have existing health problems and health assets. Similarly, all development projects have the potential to generate positive and negative health and wellbeing impacts.
- Assessment and management of community health, safety and wellbeing impacts is increasingly considered part of the risk management and social responsibility of mining and metals operators.
- The purpose of HIA is to support and add value to the decision-making process on whether, and in what way, a policy, plan, programme or project goes ahead. It does so by providing a systematic analysis of the potential community health impacts as well as developing options for maximizing the positive health impacts, minimizing the negative impacts and enhancing health equity/reducing health inequalities.
- HIAs are used to: identify and maximize the positive and avoid and minimize the negative community health and wellbeing impacts, and identify opportunities that a mining and metals project can bring.
- An HIA is a flexible approach that can be adapted to a wide variety of project types, budgets and timeframes. A nine-step process is provided in this guidance.