Environmental sustainability

BHP Billiton

Competition for land, biodiversity and water resources is growing, with climate change amplifying the sensitivities of natural systems. Protecting natural environments supports continued access to essentials such as water, food and clean air, while also reducing carbon emissions and building the capacity to adapt to a changing climate.

Our approach

We acknowledge that our operations can have significant environmental impacts. We are committed to ensuring effective environmental management through understanding and minimising impacts, and by contributing more broadly to deliver lasting environmental benefits. For example:

Responding to climate change is a strategic issue for our Company, and our approach is focused on three key areas; mitigation, adaptation and low-emissions technology. This approach is underpinned by engagement with policymakers and investors, companies and non-governmental organisations.

We also support the REDD+ legal and regulatory policy Strategy under the UNFCCC that provides economic, social and environmental incentives for developing countries to reduce GHG emissions from deforestation and related activities through the creation of carbon credits.

Our social investment

We support the conservation and ongoing management of areas of national and international significance. For example:

  • Through a global partnership with Conservation International, we are:
    • facilitating the conservation of the Valdivian Coastal Reserve in Chile – an area of rich biodiversity and one of the world’s last temperate rainforests.
    • providing approximately US$5 million to support the Alto Mayo REDD+ project in Peru which aims to contribute to alternative livelihood opportunities and to generate 800,000 tonnes of carbon credits.
    • partnering with the Tasmanian Land Conservancy in the Five Rivers Conservation Project for the conservation and ongoing management of 11,000 hectares of land in Tasmania, Australia.
  • Our Petroleum business is investing in a five year marine research partnership with the CSIRO for the World Heritage-listed Ningaloo Reef in Western Australia.
  • Our investment in a five year partnership with the Great Barrier Reef Foundation supports an intensive monitoring program to save the world’s most important breeding ground for green turtles on Raine Island.

The BHP Billiton Foundation – Environmental Resilience

Working in partnership with large organisations, the BHP Billiton Foundation supports the conservation and sustainable use of the natural environment for the benefit of future generations. The Foundation’s Environmental Resilience program will invest in a portfolio of large-scale projects that can empower people to manage natural environments in a way that brings both environmental and societal benefits. These projects aim to improve how the environment is valued, enhance development planning and demonstrate approaches to implementation which will benefit future generations.