Port Hedland Community Progress Association Inc & BHP
Lead NCPAustralia
Supporting NCP(s)
DescriptionSpecific instance alleging a non-observance of the OECD MNE Guidelines.
Date1 Feb 2021
Host country(ies)Australia
Industry sectorMining and quarrying
StatusNot accepted

Read the Final Statement published 1 September 2021: English

On 1 February 2021, the NGO Port Hedland Community Progress Association Inc submitted a specific instance to the Australian NCP alleging that BHP, an Australian based company active in the mining sector had not observed the Environment provisions (Chapter VI) of the OECD Guidelines. More specifically, the submitter alleges that the company’s industrial emissions, specifically relating to dust emissions from uncovered BHP ore stockpiles, are causing dangerous health risks to the Port Hedland community. The notifiers further claimed that the company had failed to maintain a system of environmental management appropriate to the enterprise for a decade.

The submitters are seeking a review of the company’s licence under Western Australia law to ensure they meet current environmental and health standards for safe living. Submitters are further seeking fair compensation to residents for the impacts of pollution.

The Independent Examiner of the Australian NCP assessed the complaint and engaged with the parties from February to June 2021 seeking further information and inviting submissions.

On 1 September 2021, the Australian NCP published a final statement, not accepting the specific instance. This was largely due to the nature of the issues being unsubstantiated and falling outside of the scope of the Guidelines. Notably, the Association did not provide clear details of the Guidelines related issues that it wished to resolve, and the air monitoring systems in place are largely in accordance with the Guidelines, though the case on ambient air quality monitoring will be transferred to the Western Australia government.