Nevada Gold Mines (NGM) has partnered with wildlife conservation agencies to reintroduce the Columbian Sharp-tailed Grouse (CSTG) on the IL Ranch in Nevada.
Barrick Gold Corporation (NYSE: GOLD) (TSX: ABX) said on Tuesday that this was the first time the bird was observed on the property in close to a hundred years.
Over the four years since the project’s inception, the coalition reintroduced an additional 121 females and 45 males to Bull Run Basin. Nevada Gold Mines is a joint venture between Barrick and Newmont Corporation (NYSE: NEM) (TSX: NGT).
This initiative started in 2013 when the Nevada Department of Wildlife (NDOW) collaborated with the Idaho Fish and Game, Nevada Gold Mines, and the United States Geological Survey (USGS), to start reintroducing the grouse to the property.
The department of wildlife contacted NGM to explore the possibility of partnering in the project and provide support for releasing the grouse on the gold mining company’s privately-owned IL Ranch.
The United States Geological Survey conducted vegetation monitoring, comparing the vegetative characteristics of well-known grouse habitat in Southeast Idaho to those in the Bull Run Basin on the IL Ranch. The USGS determined that Bull Run Basin offered sufficient high-quality habitat to support a population of sharp-tailed grouse that could spread into nearby areas.
The department of wildlife followed that by leading a five-year partnership to capture birds in Idaho and release them on the IL Ranch.
The first translocation of birds into the Bull Run Basin involved releasing 35 females and 15 males. While many of these birds moved to new areas, the following spring, three male sharp-tailed grouse established a communal breeding area called a lek within a mile of their release location from the previous year.
“Nevada Gold Mines is pleased to partner with local agencies on this important project. We are committed to managing our ranch lands with environment-first best practices and to supporting and uplifting ecosystems wherever possible,” said Joel Donalson, head of Permitting, Environment and Ranches for Nevada Gold Mines.
During this time, NDOW and USGS conducted studies on the survival and reproduction rates of the released birds. The organizations observed that the number of males counted on the newly established strutting ground on the IL Ranch continued to increase, and expand in other areas of the Bull Run Basin.
The grouse have now spread to five areas and have been persisting on the landscape for six years since the last release. Through diligent monitoring, the department of wildlife believes it is highly likely that all the visible birds today are Nevada-born and are reproducing and contributing to the population’s growth.
Responsible mining practices are integral to long term success
That’s why responsible mining practices are integral.
Environmental, social and governance (ESG) initiatives initiatives foster community support by generating employment, backing education and healthcare and honouring indigenous rights.
Most of the major gold companies involved in Nevada have ESG initiatives in place. For example, Kinross Gold Corporation (TSX:K) (NYSE:KGC) bolstered its ESG Governance by completing its 8th year of partnership with Trout Unlimited, during which it actively implemented river conservation projects in Alaska, Nevada, and Washington State.
Franco-Nevada Corporation (TSX: FNV) (NYSE: FNV) changed its approach to ESG in 2022 to include emphasizing responsible capital allocation, with a focus on health and safety, carbon footprint reduction, water management, risk assessment, tailings management and biodiversity preservation.
Meanwhile, Calibre Mining‘s (TSX: CXB) (OTCQX: CXBMF) Social Responsibility Policy guides the company to engage openly and respectfully with all stakeholders. It also directs Calibre to make sustainable contributions to each of the communities where it operates.
The company published its 2022 Sustainability Report in June, showing the company’s progress and achievements and providing guidance for its environmental, social and governance performance.
The company achieved a significant improvement in water recycling, increasing the recycling rate from 46 percent in 2021 to 77 percent. Likewise, there was a remarkable increase in waste recycling, with the recycling rate reaching 59 percent compared to 37 percent in the previous year. These results demonstrate Calibre’s commitment to waste reduction and the promotion of circularity.
Many mining companies in Nevada actively embrace ESG initiatives and responsible practices, fostering sustainability, environmental conservation and community engagement, thus positively impacting the region and the industry as a whole.
Calibre Mining is a sponsor of Mugglehead news coverage