Creating enduring value beyond mining

Catastrophic risks

Every quarter, we review the catastrophic operating risks that could potentially occur at our mines and projects to ensure the necessary controls are in place to manage these risks. Where appropriate, we introduce additional mitigating controls to reduce our risk even further. Catastrophic risks could lead to disastrous events that could lead to loss of lives and injuries, severely impact our reputation and undermine the viability of our business. Accordingly, we continually seek to enhance our ERM process of managing and governing these risks. We therefore renewed our approach to defining and assessing catastrophic risks, which entails developing a separate framework and set of Group standards, along with an in-depth review by subject matter experts to further safeguard our employees, communities, environment and reputation.

Sudden and significant tailings dam wall failure
We strive to fully comply with the Group's TSF Management Policy and Tailings Management Guideline, as well as international guidelines for TSFs – including, for example, ANCOLD, SANS and CDA. Our combined assurance approach is bolstered by the annual Independent Geotechnical and Tailings Review Board (IGTRB) at Cerro Corona (Peru) and Tarkwa (Ghana). In addition, we are in the process of implementing the Global Industry Standard on Tailings Management (GISTM) with timing in accordance with ICMM targets.
Significant pit wall slope or underground failure
Work conducted by the Geotechnical Review Board – consisting of independent and internal industry experts – continued at South Deep for all major projects, the Australian underground operations, when necessary, and for all pit cutbacks at our other operations in Australia, Ghana and Peru.
Major incident causing loss of life and property damage
Gold Fields' mines are typically designed with consideration of probable precipitation and flood modelling in mind to ensure appropriate mitigation measures are incorporated. Flooding and other associated risks form part of the ICMM's Critical Control Management programme, where control measures are audited internally and verified by independent parties. Independent consultants carried out indicative climate change risks and vulnerability assessments in 2021. More comprehensive assessments are planned to be carried out for Cerro Corona and Tarkwa in 2022 to support the updates and development of internal guidelines and standards. This work will also support our GISTM conformance programme.
COOKE 3, 2 AND 1

Impact of Ezulwini
and Cooke 3, 2 and 1
rewatering on South
The reinforced concrete water plugs between South Deep and Ezulwini are subject to robust inspections, regularly planned maintenance and a condition-monitoring programme to ensure their integrity. In addition, there is a legal process for Ezulwini's closure underway, in which we participate as an interested party backed by a robust legal strategy. South Deep is also seeking to work with Ezulwini to find alternative solutions to use the mine water.
Major bus or aircraft incident while transporting employees
As far as reasonably practicable, we divide employees between flights to avoid entire teams travelling together. We only use reputable and accredited airline companies, and where it is necessary to charter flights, these companies must be accredited by their respective civil aviation authorities, WYVERN or BARS. The use of technology, like video conferencing facilities, and our regionalised model assists in reducing air travel and the Group's carbon footprint. Where we use buses to transport employees, we follow a rigorous selection process to award transport contracts. We also apply strict transportation standards, including inspection and maintenance, and are continually seeking to implement new technology to protect our employees against any accidents.
Significant and sudden failure
We implement comprehensive planned maintenance systems on all our fixed infrastructure, machinery and equipment, which are supported by condition monitoring by third-party specialists and original equipment manufacturers. Shafts at South Deep are operated by skilled and experienced personnel and are subject to robust operating standards and procedures, regulatory examinations and compliance audits. We conduct in-depth structural inspections using third-party specialists and, where necessary, remediation. Critical spares and contingency plans are kept updated to ensure rapid recovery in case of a breakdown.
Major incident causing loss of life and property damage
Mandatory codes of practice and mine standards for fire prevention and flammable gas explosions are implemented and adhered across our operations. As part of our Critical Control Management programme, we regularly implement and verify our controls for fires and explosions. Automatic fire detection and suppression systems are placed on planned maintenance schedules and checked at a predetermined interval. The use of self-contained self-rescuers is compulsory at all our underground operations. The transportation of explosives by our contractors is also strictly monitored.