Centamin recognises the significant biodiversity and importance of the Red Sea, with its magnificent coral reefs and diversity of fish. When planning the pipeline, great care was taken to ensure the pipeline was positioned in an area without a coral reef and the pipeline is fitted with a series of micro-grills to ensure no fish or other life enter the pipes.
Careful management and maintenance of the range of flora and fauna at operations and exploration sites is an important part of Centamin’s commitment to environmental stewardship. Centamin’s approach to biodiversity seeks to:
- Minimise and mitigate - to minimise any potential negative effects that mining or exploration activities could have on the local environment; and
- Restore and rehabilitate - sites and any damage caused to the extent practicably possible.
Sukari is not located in a protected area and does impact the habitats of any International Union for the Conservation of Nature (“IUCN”) Red list species.
Detailed records of the full range of biodiversity present at Sukari were identified as part of the Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (“ESIA”) process, and a proportion of every annual budget is ring-fenced for closure restoration to ensure all future liabilities can be met. As Sukari is located in Egypt’s Eastern desert, where there are minimal flora and fauna, the mine has a limited need for the restoration of habitat. However, during 2019 as part of site rehabilitation plans, a tree nursery was established for the propagation of a range of native and endemic plant species for landscaping around on-site administrative and camp areas. Another biodiversity initiative being investigated for the introduction at Sukari is the installation of sonic alarms near the tailings dam. The purpose of this is to prevent passing and migrating birds from drinking water stored behind the dam.
Wildlife such as snakes and scorpions are found onsite at Sukari, when this happens members of the site environmental management team capture and relocate them to safe areas on site away from people and operations. All members of the Sukari environment team have received training to ensure animals are carefully and safely handled.