Rio Tinto Rio Tinto

2010 Annual report

Performance

Sustainable development review

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Central to the way we work

Our approach to sustainable development creates competitive advantage. It helps us deliver better return for our shareholders, manage risk effectively, reduce environmental impacts, cut operating costs, attract high calibre employees and provide more business opportunities.

View more about our approach to sustainable development at www.riotinto.com/ourapproach.

Sustainable development overview

Key achievements
  • Our all injury frequency rate continued to improve, with an 18 per cent reduction achieved in 2010.
  • Sixty seven per cent of the electricity we used in 2010 was from low carbon sources, mainly hydroelectricity.
  • We remained the largest private sector employer of indigenous Australians.
  • We entered into formal partnerships with the International Union for Conservation of Nature and the Danish Institute of Human Rights.
  • We retained our listing on the FTSE4Good, Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes and Carbon Disclosure Leadership Index.
Key priorities
  • Refresh our approach to sustainable development to ensure it remains focused on the social, environmental, economic and governance risks most relevant to delivering our business strategy.
  • Continue to reduce incident and injury rates toward our goal of zero.
  • Identify and prioritise management of emerging health risks.
  • Improve the diversity of our workforce.
  • Maintain our energy use and GHG emission reduction programmes.
  • Realise the potential for carbon, water and biodiversity offsets on our non operational landholdings.

Materiality assessment

We continue to build on our materiality assessment methodology to ensure this report remains focused on our most significant sustainable development issues.

Our process was developed in line with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) guidance. It involves identification and prioritisation of issues affecting our business and its stakeholders over the next three years.

In 2010 we expanded our assessment to include outcomes of interviews with key shareholders, investment houses, academics and non governmental organisations along with the opinions of 1,265 global leaders who were surveyed as part of our stakeholder engagement work and 33,000 employees who completed our global employee engagement survey.

Whilst our materiality assessments have supported reporting on consistent topics in recent years, the 2010 assessment prompted additional coverage of our Business Resilience and Recovery Programme.

Performance data for a selection of our most material sustainable development issues are subject to external assurance. We also discuss financial performance, safety and greenhouse gas emissions in the product group sections of this report.

Omission from the issues covered in our report does not mean that the issue is not managed by the company. Please see www.riotinto.com/ourapproach for additional information.

Diagram showing Rio Tinto’s approach to sustainable development

Goals and targets

Trend

Progress to date

Our safety goal is zero injuries and zero fatalities.

Progress is measured through our all injury frequency rate (AIFR) per 200,000 hours worked.

arrow indicating improving performance

18 per cent reduction in our all injury frequency rate compared with 2009.

30 per cent reduction in the rate of new cases of occupational illness per 10,000 employees between 2008 and 2013.

arrow indicating improving performance

56 per cent reduction in the rate of new cases of occupational illness compared with 2008.

Ten per cent reduction in the rate of employees per 10,000 employees exposed to an eight hour noise dose of more than 85 decibels between 2008 and 2013.

arrow indicating declining performance

0.3 per cent increase in the rate of employees potentially exposed to an eight hour noise dose of more than 85 decibels compared with 2008.

Six per cent reduction in total greenhouse gas emissions intensity between 2008 and 2013. We are also targeting a further four per cent reduction by 2015, to deliver an overall ten per cent reduction.

arrow indicating improving performance

3.7 per cent reduction in our total greenhouse gas emissions intensity compared with 2008.

Six per cent reduction in our freshwater use per tonne of product between 2008 and 2013.

arrow indicating declining performance

2.3 per cent increase in our freshwater use per tonne of product compared with 2008.

Our diversity goal is to employ people based on job requirements that represent the diversity of our surrounding communities.

We are targeting:

  • Women to represent 20 per cent of our senior management by 2015.
  • Women to represent 40 per cent of our 2015 graduate intake.
  • 15 per cent of our 2015 graduate intake to be nationals from regions where we are developing new businesses.
symbol indicating new target
  • Women represented 14 per cent of our senior management in 2010.
  • Women represented 27 per cent of our 2010 graduate intake.
  • Eight per cent of our 2010 graduate intake were nationals from regions where we are developing new businesses.

All operations have in place locally appropriate, publicly reported social performance indicators that demonstrate a positive contribution to the economic development of the communities and regions where we work, consistent with the Millennium Development Goals, by 2013.

symbol indicating new target

We collected data for the first time in 2010.

20 per cent of our operations had locally appropriate, publicly reported social performance indicators in place in 2010.

arrow indicating improving performance Improving performance

arrow indicating declining performance Declining performance

symbol indicating new target New target

 

Performance data

Our sustainable development performance data are reported for calendar years and, unless otherwise stated, represent 100 per cent of the parameter at each managed operation, even though Rio Tinto may have only partial ownership.

Data reported in previous years may be modified if verification processes detect material errors, or if changes are required to ensure comparability over time.

Wherever possible, data for operations acquired prior to 1 October of the reporting period are included. Divested operations are included in data collection processes up until the transfer of management control.

We report in line with the GRI G3 guidelines at Application level A+ and have implemented the International Council on Mining and Metals’ (ICMM) sustainable development framework.

Further information on our data definitions, our GRI checked report and our alignment with the ICMM sustainable development principles and supporting position statements can be found on www.riotinto.com.

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