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Vale implements the Global Industry Standard on Tailings Management (GISTM) for its Tailings Storage Facilities (TSFs)

Rio de Janeiro, July 27, 2023 – Vale has been continuously seeking to improve its Tailings Storage Facilities (TSFs) management, and one of the drivers of this process is the Global Industry Standard for Tailings Management (GISTM). The standard was launched in 2020, based on an initiative by the United Nations Environment Program, the Principles for Responsible Investment, and the International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM), becoming the first mining sector global standard and a dam safety global benchmark. 

Fulfilling the commitment to the ICMM, the society, and its employees, Vale has implemented GISTM in 48 of its 50 TSFs, 35 of which are in the Iron Solutions business unit in Brazil and 13 in the Energy Transition Metals business unit (11 in Canada and 2 in Brazil). The two remaining Iron Solutions TSFs in Brazil have a lower consequence classification and will be in conformance with the standard by August 2025, following the criteria of the Conformance Protocols defined by ICMM. The 48 TSFs in conformance meet the GISTM requirements, and some of them have action plans in place according to the Conformance Protocols. 

"We delivered on our commitment and implemented GISTM for our prioritized tailings facilities. This is an important milestone in the evolution of our dam management system and the safety of our operations and surrounding communities. We will continue advancing by incorporating international best practices to make Vale an increasingly safe and sustainable company", states Vale's Chief Executive Officer, Eduardo Bartolomeo. 

In addition to meeting the 77 standard requirements, a TSF in conformance with the GISTM means that the oversight, monitoring, and transparency of information have been and will continue to be improved. The focus is on the safety of people and the environment throughout the entire TSFs life cycle. 

"Implementing the Standard is not a quick or simple process. It requires a high level of effort sustained over time, seeking to integrate social, environmental, and technical aspects to avoid any harm to people and the environment, with zero tolerance for human fatalities. In this way, not all actions can be integrated in parallel, and some present technical challenges. We have already walked an important path, but we still have a lot to do, and we remain firm in this commitment to have increasingly safer operations and be in conformance with the best international practices", highlights Vale's Technical Executive Vice President, Rafael Bittar. 

Implementing GISTM for Vale's TSFs represents, however, one part of the company's efforts to become safer and more sustainable. Vale has been improving the management of its mining dams by conducting an in-depth technical analysis of the history, current condition, and performance of each structure. The preventive, corrective, and monitoring actions have also been intensified, being increasingly integrated with social movements and updated according to legislation. 

Vale also continues to progress in de-characterizating its upstream structures in Brazil. As of 2019, out of the 30 dams of this kind included in the program, 12 have already been de-characterized, representing 40% of the total. The following structure is expected to be de-characterized later this year, with the program completion scheduled in 2035. The de-characterization of upstream facilities in Brazil is Vale’s commitment, in addition to complying with current Brazilian federal and state legislation on dam safety. 

More information about the Vale’s dams is available at


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