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Sustainability Strategy

At Teck, the pursuit of sustainability guides our approach to business. Over our more than 100-year history, we have learned that responsible mining and mineral development are fundamental to our long-term success. 

About Our Strategy

Sustainability is embedded in our operational practices. Although there were many examples of environmental stewardship, health and safety initiatives, and community engagement throughout our history, in 2009 we established a cross-functional group to develop a coordinated approach to sustainability, culminating in the launch of our sustainability strategy in 2011. 

Our sustainability strategy sets short-term goals to 2020 and long-term goals to 2030 in six focus areas representing the most significant sustainability issues and opportunities facing our company: Community, Water, Our People, Biodiversity, Energy and Climate Change, and Air. A focus area is a topic that has a material impact on our business and communities of interest, represents an area of significant opportunity and/or risk, and requires company-wide focus and engagement.

Our strategy is integrated into decision-making by embedding it into management standards, into remuneration and into corporate, site and employee annual plans and objectives. Corporate, site and employee objective-setting and evaluation processes are updated to reflect the broader performance objectives set out in our strategy to align priorities at all levels of the company.

Throughout the year, our senior management team and the Safety and Sustainability Committee of the Board review performance against our sustainability strategy and approve future actions. As we move forward, we are focused on achieving our sustainability goals while managing emerging risks and embracing opportunities that increase our competitiveness and contribution to sustainable development.

Strategy at a Glance

Vision for Biodiversity

We achieve a net positive impact on biodiversity in areas affected by our activities.

2030 Goals

  1. Achieve a net positive impact on biodiversity in regions where we operate through environmental management, reclamation and conservation.

2020 Goals

  1. Implement biodiversity management plans for each of our operations.

  2. Integrate the consideration of biodiversity into the exploration, construction and closure stages of the mining life cycle.

  3. Enhance our contributions to biodiversity conservation knowledge through collaboration in research, education and conservation.

Progress Summary

  • Began planning for ongoing revegetation at our Highland Valley Copper Operations, with an increased shift to using more diverse mixes of native species and alternative soil amendment materials.

  • Advancing development of our net positive impact strategy with our exploration and project development groups.

  • Initiated new collaboration with the BC Parks Foundation to develop and implement an innovative new ecological monitoring program in provincial parks.

For more information on our work towards achieving goals in this focus area, see the Biodiversity page

Vision for Air

We continually improve air quality for the benefit of workers, communities and the environment in areas affected by our activities.

2030 Goals

  1. Partner with communities, governments and other organizations to facilitate action and the sharing of knowledge to continuously improve air quality.

  2. Contribute to measurable and meaningful improvements in areas where our activities impact air quality.

2020 Goals

  1. Improve monitoring and understanding of our releases to air and the potential impacts on people, communities and the environment.

  2. In consultation with communities, governments and other organizations, set air quality goals and establish risk-based action plans to achieve goals.

  3. Strengthen the integration of air quality considerations into early-stage project development.

Progress Summary

  • Improvements to our ambient air quality monitoring programs were implemented at our Elkview, Line Creek and Cardinal River operations in 2018. Information on current emission monitoring programs and dust management practices have also been collected for all operations. Studies were undertaken at our Red Dog Operations to better understand impacts of historic fugitive dust on surrounding flora and fauna.

  • Targets that were set for particulate matter emissions at Carmen de Andacollo Operations and targets for lead concentrations in ambient air at Trail Operations were achieved ahead of schedule.

  • A list of air quality considerations was developed for incorporation into early project planning stages and knowledge sessions were held with the Project Development Group.

For more information on our work towards achieving goals in this focus area, see the Air page 

Vision for Community

We build strong relationships and create lasting mutual benefits based on respect for what communities value.

2030 Goals 

  1. Fully integrate social risk and opportunity, human rights, and the rights of Indigenous Peoples into how we do business and our individual actions and behaviours.

  2. Create lasting mutual benefits through collaboration on social, economic, and environmental initiatives.

  3. Collaborate with Indigenous communities to consistently create lasting benefits that respect their unique interests and aspirations.

2020 Goals

  1. Refine our business policies and practices based on results of our social risk assessments, our work in human rights and developments in the rights of Indigenous Peoples.

  2. Engage with communities to identify social, economic and environmental priorities and to mutually define outcomes and measures of success.

  3. Work with Indigenous Peoples to identify and participate in initiatives to support the self-defined goals of Indigenous communities.

  4. Develop metrics for monitoring Indigenous training, employment and procurement to establish baselines and drive progress.

Progress Summary

  • All operations completed social risk assessments and human rights self-assessments, which are contributing to operational risk planning.

  • All operations are working to meet this goal through specific engagement activities, local community investment partnerships, and formal impact benefit or community development agreements.

  • Continued to develop Teck’s reconciliation actions, which includes our commitment and actions towards building strong relationships and enhancing respect between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples, organizations and communities in Canada.

  • Completed surveys of sites, operations and exploration on current metrics, and identified a preliminary set of verifiable metrics to be collected to allow for company-wide reporting and the development of measurement systems.

For more information on our work towards achieving goals in this focus area, see the Community page 

Vision for Energy and Climate Change

We take action to reduce GHG emissions by improving our energy efficiency and implementing low-carbon technologies.

2030 Goals

  1. Implement projects that reduce energy consumption by 6,000 TJ.

  2. Implement projects that reduce GHG emissions by 450 kilotonnes (kt) of CO2-equivalent.

  3. Commit to 100 megawatts (MW) of alternative energy generation.

2020 Goals

  1. Implement projects that reduce energy consumption by 2,500 terajoules (TJ).

  2. Implement projects that reduce GHG emissions by 275 kilotonnes (kt) of CO2-equivalent (CO2e).

  3. Assess opportunities and identify potential project partners toward achieving our 2030 alternative energy goal.

  4. Engage with governments to advocate for effective and efficient carbon pricing.

Progress Summary

  • Reduced 2,220 TJ of energy consumption since 2011 through projects implemented, with additional projects identified for early 2019.

  • Completed our gocal of reducing GHG emissions by 275 kilotonnes (kt) of CO2-equivalent in 2017.

  • Pursuing the purchase of SunMine, a solar farm in Kimberley, B.C., and there is a current focus by our technology and innovation groups to align projects with our transition to a low-carbon economy.

  • Advancing advocacy efforts on carbon pricing through engagements with the British Columbia, Alberta and Canadian governments.  

For more information on our work towards achieving goals in this focus area, see the Energy and Climate Change page 

Vision for Our People

We engage and develop our people, and ensure everyone goes home safe and healthy every day.

2030 Goals

  1. Eliminate serious injuries, illnesses and fatalities through effective high potential risk management.

  2. Be a diverse and inclusive workforce representative of the communities in which we operate. 

  3. Be a workplace with a shared commitment to fairness, respect, operational excellence and productivity.  

2020 Goals

  1. Reduce serious injuries and eliminate fatalities by ensuring our high-potential risks have effective controls in place and by enhancing our culture of safety.

  2. Implement improved occupational health and hygiene monitoring and exposure control to protect the longer-term health of workers.

  3. Build a diverse workforce that includes more women and Indigenous Peoples.

  4. Develop leaders who can confidently and efficiently manage safe, respectful and productive operations.

Progress Summary

  • While we reduced our lost-time injuries in 2018, we unfortunately had two fatalities at our steelmaking coal operations. We are implementing our High-Potential Risk Control strategy as planned and all operations are on track to meet work team risk assessment and effectiveness review requirements. Courageous Safety Leadership 4 training was also fully completed in 2018.

  • Eleven out of 12 operations achieved “on track” status for implementing their exposure reduction plans, and plans for 2019/2020 were submitted by all operations. We also increased our capacity for quantitative data collection by training more than 60 sample collectors across the company.

  • Women make up 18% of Teck’s total workforce, up from 14% in 2015, and 31% of total new hires in 2018 were women. As of early 2019, 29% of Teck’s Board of Directors are female.

  • 243 Teck employees completed one of our Leadership Development Programs in 2018. Approximately 700 employees across Teck participated in Gender Intelligence workshops, with over 1,400 employees completing this workshop to date since 2017.

For more information on our work towards achieving goals in this focus area, see the Our People page

Vision for Water

We contribute to the balance between social, economic, recreational and cultural benefits of water resources, within ecologically sustainable limits.

2030 Goals

  1. Work within an informed understanding of ecological limits, regional issues, and demands on water resources to address:​

    • Water Quality: Keep clean water clean, minimize water quality deterioration, and take care of affected water resources​

    • Water Quantity: Minimize water use per unit of production and transition to alternative water sources​

    • Water Stewardship: Contribute to water use planning in our areas of influence.

2020 Goals

  1. Contribute to watershed management in water-stressed regions through water use efficiency projects, use of alternative water sources, water quality improvement measures, and capacity building.

  2. Increase our understanding of groundwater and proactively assess groundwater risks.

  3. Collaborate in developing innovative water technology and practice.

Progress Summary

  • Quebrada Blanca and Carmen de Andacollo operations worked towards implementing a prioritized list of water projects to meet Teck’s fresh water use efficiency target. Highland Valley Copper, Red Dog and Carmen de Andacollo operations made progress towards their watershed-based management plans in collaboration with communities of interest.

  • Highland Valley Copper, Red Dog and Carmen de Andacollo operations assessed groundwater data and knowledge gaps, defined groundwater modelling scope and requirements, and advanced work on conceptual and numerical models.

  • Successfully advancing an in situ method to remove selenium and nitrate from mine-impacted water through our new saturated rock fill facility.

For more information on our work towards achieving goals in this focus area, see the Water page 


Teck is a diversified resource company committed to responsible mining and mineral development with business units focused on copper, zinc, steelmaking coal and energy.