Albemarle becomes first lithium producer to complete independent audit and publish IRMA report

 Albemarle (NYSE: ALB), a global leader in providing essential elements for mobility, energy, connectivity and health, announced that it achieved an IRMA 50 level of performance in an independent third-party assessment of its lithium brine extraction and concentration site in the Salar de Atacama, using the Initiative for Responsible Mining Assurance’s (IRMA) comprehensive mining standard.

This marks a new milestone for Albemarle, as it is the first lithium producer and only the third mine site globally to complete an independent audit and have its audit report published by IRMA, continuing the company’s commitment to transparent and responsible management of its resources. The assessment process covers 26 areas, including water management, human rights, greenhouse gas emissions, fair labor, terms of work, among others.  Forty percent of these standards require active engagement with nearby communities to ensure dialogue, transparency, and collaboration on key issues such as emergency response, grievance mechanisms, and mine closure planning.  A third-party auditor corroborated that the company met 70% of over 400 rigorous IRMA requirements at the Salar de Atacama site.

“We are proud to be the first lithium producer to complete an IRMA audit and publish our report. This third-party audit shares with our communities, stakeholders, customers, employees and investors that we are committed to doing the right things, the right way,” said Ellen Lenny-Pessagno, Global VP of External Affairs and Sustainability for Albemarle Energy Storage. “We have made many positive changes in how we operate, engage with the community and transparently share information, and we are committed to continuous improvement against this standard. This new era of lithium requires responsible mining to achieve a just transition to electrification and digitalization globally.”

“We congratulate the entire Albemarle team who undertook this IRMA audit,” said Aimee Boulanger, Executive Director of IRMA. “It demonstrates Albemarle’s commitment to transparency and community engagement, and their intention to continue to improve social and environmental performance at their Salar de Atacama operation.”

The IRMA scoring system recognizes four levels of performance: IRMA Transparency, in which a mine is third-party-assessed and publicly shares its scores; IRMA 50 or 75, signifying that a mine shares its scores and furthermore meets a core set of critical requirements together with at least 50 percent or 75 percent achievement of the possible score in each of the four principles of the Standard for Responsible Mining (business integrity, planning for positive legacies, social and environmental responsibility); and IRMA 100, which means the mine meets all of the Standard’s requirements.

Albemarle shareholders, customers, employees, and the public can visit the Mines Under Assessment page of IRMA’s website for updated information on the site’s third-party audit. On-site auditors interviewed mine management, functional leaders, mine workers, and external community stakeholders. The report of the assessment conducted by ERM Certification and Verification Services (ERM CVS), is publicly available on the IRMA website.

The Initiative for Responsible Mining Assurance (IRMA) oversees the only independent, comprehensive and transparent process for assessing individual mines’ performance against an equally governed, best-practice standard — and for measuring their subsequent progress in reducing social and environmental impacts. The rigorous IRMA process invites all those currently or potentially affected by a mine to share their experiences and perspectives with the third-party auditing team.