• Climate Changes


    Reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and adapting to human-caused climate change are among the most urgent and challenging priorities of our lifetime. The widespread negative effects of a changing climate are now playing out around the world. Longer term, the modelled outcomes of climate change have been well documented by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), and range from rising sea levels and increased frequency of extreme weather-related events to loss of wildlife and plant species, to name just a few.

    Orla is committed to being part of the climate solution, which is essential to our purpose of creating net positive benefits for our stakeholders. We support the global climate goal of limiting the Earth’s temperature increase to 1.5° C by 2100 relative to pre-industrial levels, as called for by the IPCC and the Paris Agreement. As a newer company, we have been exposed to climate factors since inception and have built them into our decision making and operations, so that we limit our GHG footprint. We recognize that no company or geography is immune to the extreme weather impacts and believe that regulatory changes in response to climate change will not have an adverse effect on the Company’s business, financial planning, strategy, and operational results.


    Read more about Orla’s approach to Climate Change


    Cerro Quema Project, Panama

  • Water

    At Orla, we understand that to maintain our social licence, comply with water-related permits, and be a sustainable business, it is critical that we manage water responsibly. Our water management strategy focuses on minimizing our withdrawal of water from the surrounding environment, while maximizing reuse of water during operations.

    Water monitoring at Cerro Quema Project, PanamaPrior to commencing mining activities, we conduct assessments that consider our water needs and our potential impact on water quality and quantity. These studies inform our action plans and operating practices, including mitigation measures. An important part of our approach is to understand the water-related challenges and opportunities with other users that share the catchment with us, and to provide data transparently to decision-makers so that we positively contribute to the water management of the region, even beyond the boundaries of the mine.

    From exploration drilling to mineral processing, water is required for many aspects of a mining operation. Yet water is possibly the most critical ESG challenge for any mining company simply because water is interconnected with other pressing material issues. For instance, water scarcity and frequent storm events are linked to climate change and can impact a mining operation. Water flows from rainfall can come into contact with mining areas, such as waste rock, potentially mobilizing contaminants that affect soil and end up in nearby water bodies. Activities involved in the mining lifecycle can also degrade water quality, which in turn may impact biodiversity as well as public health.

    Water risks to our business include those related to the quantity of water used for our operation and the impact our mining activity has on local water quality and availability.


    Read more about Orla’s Water Stewardship


  • Waste & Hazardous Materials

    Gold mining uses and generates both waste and hazardous materials, which vary depending on the type of mine and operations. For example, mining uses explosives to break rock, cyanide to extract the gold from the ore, and hydrocarbons (oils and fuels) to run mining equipment. As well as these hazardous materials, rock with no economic value (waste) is stored so that any physical and chemical risks they pose to the surrounding environment are minimized. Responsible management of waste and hazardous materials is critical to protect people and local ecosystems, while reducing risk and environmental liability for our business.

    Our objective is to minimize all forms of waste generated by our operations and ensure its proper disposal, so we divert waste from landfills. We look for new opportunities to reduce waste, incorporate circular economy approaches and extend the life cycle of the products we use.


    Read more about our Responsible Production approach


  • Air Quality

    Mining’s potential impact on air quality, from activities that produce dust or gaseous emissions, is both a local and global issue. For example, dust generated by blasting, crushing and hauling rock, as well as diesel particulate matter from engines, can adversely affect ecosystems and human health, if left unmitigated. Addressing Orla’s impact on air quality is essential for meeting our social license to operate and living up to our purpose to transform resources into a net positive benefit for all of our stakeholders.

    Our commitment to protecting people and responsibly managing Orla’s environmental impacts on air quality is guided by our Environmental, Sustainability, Health & Safety Policy, our Environmental Management System and our ESG Strategy. We have practices in place to mitigate our impacts on air quality and to meet obligations set out in our permits and environmental regulations.

    As part of our pre-mine planning and environmental baseline studies, we collect air quality data, conduct environmental impact assessments and identify areas and processes that may potentially impact air quality. Based on these insights, we develop and implement programs to reduce the impact to the lowest extent possible. These measures include:

    • Air quality control systems installed at our premises to measure and mitigate emissions.
    • Dust suppression controls such as water trucks to curb dust from hauling material on gravel roads. Where feasible, roads are paved to eliminate dust emissions altogether.
    • Maintaining a modern fleet of vehicles that we service routinely to ensure they operate efficiently. The vehicle engines have pollution controls to minimize particulate matter emitted and are compliant with Tier 4 standards, which emit up to 90% less particulate matter and NOx compounds.


    Read more about how Orla minimizes emissions


  • Biodiversity

    Mines can have potentially adverse impacts on biodiversity. Such impacts can occur when land or water bodies are disturbed, wildlife is displaced, or habitats are contaminated through mining processes like acid rock drainage. It’s therefore important that mining companies take meaningful steps to protect and support biodiversity. Mining operations may also be subject to laws protecting endangered species and/or ecologically sensitive areas across the entire mining life cycle (including once mining is completed).

    Monitoring plants at Cerro Quema Project, PanamaOrla has environmental management plans at each of our sites to ensure we protect biodiversity and comply with permit conditions and regulatory obligations. These plans cover the different stages of project lifecycles and address risks to biodiversity. For our current operational phase at Camino Rojo, our plans include monitoring wildlife, plants, and species, with a focus on species at risk that have been identified through the environmental baseline studies. These plans address risks to various biodiversity elements and ensure that we comply with permit conditions, regulatory obligations, and protections.

    Orla is committed to following the mitigation hierarchy of avoidance, minimization, restoration, and offsetting to reduce any negative impacts on biodiversity from our mining development as much as possible. We perform studies during the environmental permitting phase to gather sufficient knowledge about local ecosystems and habitats. We also submit Change of Land Use Plans and Environmental Impact Assessments to regulatory authorities for review and approval prior to commencing mine operation.


    Read more about our Path to Nature Positive Operations 



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