Shalini Kesarsing: Protection of biodiversity and ecosystems is one of our top priorities

News 2022
15 June 2022

Shalini Kesarsing, Manager of Health, Safety, and Environment, has the challenging task of making sure we have an effective implementation of our environmental management program.
She started working at Rosebel in November 2005 as an Environmental Specialist and has since then contributed to shaping the organization and several company policies.
“Our focus has always been on wildlife and aquatic life assessment and monitoring when it comes to our environmental management,” she says. “We have learned what species or habitats are present or absent among the wildlife on our concession through aquatic and wildlife surveys. The goal of the Environmental Department at Rosebel is to avoid/minimize the impact of our mining activities on the environment and strive for continuous improvement in environmental performance. We do water and air quality monitoring, raise environmental awareness amongst the employees at Rosebel, but also within the surrounding communities. We also coordinate the waste management practices at Rosebel and the revegetation of disturbed areas.”

According to Shalini, progressive reclamation remains an ongoing challenge, as the majority of our mine pits are still active and the associated waste dumps are still in use or being re-used. These areas have not yet been shaped for final revegetation activities. “Nonetheless, we have still managed to revegetate 71 ha till date, by hand planting and hydro-seeding on waste dump slopes,” she says.
“The process we follow is quite intensive. All ramps are contoured to a slope of 26 degrees to ensure long-term physical stability. After contouring, we plant seeds such as Cassia, Bermuda, and Bahia by hand every 5 meters. In the past, we have also planted local grasses. In areas where we do hydro seeding we follow a planting process in which wood chips, seed, fertilizer, tackifier, and emulsifier are mixed with hydro-mulch to form a slurry. The slurry is transported in a tank on a hydro-seeder truck and sprayed over the prepared slope area. Hydro-seeding promotes rapid germination of seeds and protects exposed soils against water- and wind erosion.”

Last year, IAMGOLD announced the intention to achieve net negative greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2050. “As part of this commitment, our IAMGOLD Corporate office brought in an external organization to assist with the development of a GHG roadmap and to set interim GHG targets,” Shalini explains. “In April 2022 kick-off meetings were held with IAMGOLD and Rosebel representatives related to mine and mill decarbonized measures, as well as brainstorm sessions on GHG reduction options, past projects and their barriers/ drivers. The main areas of focus are based on the improvements in material handling such as hauling optimization and truck efficiency.”
Other mining processes being reviewed include improvement of ore tracking, blasting (mine to mill optimization) and other feasible energy efficiency measures. Follow-up clarification on mill and mining processes for Rosebel are currently in progress and will be used to develop the site GHG reduction roadmap and target setting. According to Shalini, “protection of biodiversity and ecosystems remains to be one of our top priorities at Rosebel, and we will continue working together with the corporate team and other IAMGOLD site representatives to provide input in developing the GHG roadmap.”


IAMGOLD’s net negative greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions commitment 

IAMGOLD's commitment to net negative GHG emissions comprises two separate global targets. The first global target relates to reductions in Scope 1 (direct), Scope 2 (indirect - energy) and Scope 3 (indirect - value chain) emissions. The second global target relates to GHG removals. Reversing the effects of climate change requires not only that emissions be reduced, but that substantial amounts of existing GHG also be removed from the atmosphere.  Initial work will focus on defining specific options to address the Company's largest sources of emissions: heavy and light vehicle fleets and power generation and supply. IAMGOLD’s commitment is to reduce its emissions profile to as close to zero as possible by no later than 2050.