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Whitehaven Coal Limited : Annual Report 2013
55 Whitehaven Coal Limited Annual Report 2013 6 Communities 6.1 OUR APPROACH TO WORKING IN PARTNERSHIP WITH OUR COMMUNITY Our approach to community relations is fully integrated into our operations by both our corporate team and our site-based management. Our overall approach to dealing with the stakeholders is encapsulated in our Board's Health, Safety, Environment & Community Committee Charter. The Committee's Charter is available on the Company's website. www.whitehavencoal.com.au/ about_us/corporate_governance.cfm 6.2 STAKEHOLDER ENGAGEMENT & CONSULTATION Overview Since Whitehaven's inception in 1999 the Company has focused on high-level, personal contact and engagement with a wide range of stakeholders, and in particular, our neighbours and local landholders. As our business has expanded to include more operations and larger operations, we have aimed to continue this personal approach albeit it on a wider scale. Communication with local stakeholders continues to occur every day in our business both in terms of communication with individuals, and with broader representative groups. It is an integral part of our day-to-day operations. We also engage where possible with outside stakeholders who are wishing to learn more about coal mining in the Gunnedah Basin and the management of environmental and social impacts in our area. Given the close proximity of our operations, we engage with the same stakeholder groups across multiple mine sites. These include all levels of government in the local areas, as well as local community groups and indigenous groups. We are committed to providing transparent, accurate and timely communication, and to providing appropriate channels through which stakeholders can contact us in a timely and e cient manner. In March 2013, the full Whitehaven Board held its regular Board meeting at the Narrabri mine site and included meetings to discuss long-term planning issues with the Gunnedah Shire Council. This meeting provided a range of Whitehaven directors with the opportunity to hear directly from councils their views on both the bene ts our business brings to the region, and the way impacts can be best managed. During the application and approval processes Whitehaven has provided one-on-one discussions with local land owners who have the potential to be impacted by these proposed projects. In addition, community meetings have been conducted in the towns closest to the proposed projects. Importantly, given that Whitehaven's workforce, by majority, lives and works in the local area, we are constantly receiving feedback and advice from community members in relation to our operations. We are also participants in and contributors to a number of industry working groups. These include the Minerals and Energy Working Group. The Minerals and Energy Working Group is chaired by an independent Chairman and made up of mining and energy representatives, State Government representatives, Premier's Department and Local Government representatives. The Working Group reviews issues a ecting the Gunnedah Basin and the planned expansion of the mining and resource industries. These issues include housing, training opportunities and general infrastructure impacts. The Working Group provides a forum for engagement with a range of stakeholders including government departments not directly dealing with the mining industry. Community consultative committees Community Consultative Committees (CCC) are in place at each of our operations as outlined in the NSW State Government Guidelines. The purpose of a CCC is to provide a forum for open discussion between representatives of the Company, the community, the council and other stakeholders on issues directly relating to the mine's operations, environmental performance and community relations, and to keep the community informed on these matters. CCC meetings are held quarterly, and the minutes of these meetings are available on our website: www.whitehavencoal.com.au/community.cfm We greatly appreciate the interest from our CCC members and the important role they play as a conduit between Whitehaven and the broader community. We seek to respond positively to all feedback received through the CCC process.
Annual Report 2012