Strong environmental stewardship
Chalice is committed to rigorous standards and governing frameworks to ensure responsible environmental practices are followed in all our activities. We take our environmental responsibilities seriously. We are committed to achieving excellence in environmental management through understanding the sensitivities of the areas where we are active and applying the mitigation hierarchy to avoid, minimise, mitigate and, where appropriate, offset our impacts to the environment.
At Chalice we believe that meeting the global challenge of decarbonisation should not come at the cost of unacceptable local impacts. We fundamentally believe that mining can be done sustainably and responsibly, and that mining development can coexist with conservation and community values.
Environmental management measures are applied proactively across all our exploration programs through procedures and standards to manage potential environmental risks, impacts and opportunities across all our activities. All environmental management is undertaken in accordance with the Environment Policy.
To view a copy of the Chalice Conservation Management Plan please click here.
Annual & Sustainability Report
Gonneville Biodiversity Strategy
To ensure science-based no net loss of species or habitat diversity as a result of mining operations.
Delivering the Biodiversity Strategy and Offsets
On-the-ground reforestation work has begun to support fauna and connect remnant areas of vegetation regionally.
Syrinx Vegetation Mapping
Clearing and agricultural activities within farmland properties at the Gonneville Project site have resulted in fragmented, remnant ecosystems with low levels of biodiversity, and altered vegetation form and structure.
In mid-2023, the Syrinx Environmental team was engaged by Chalice to investigate plant species diversity, abundance and frequency from a number of remnant vegetation patches on Chalice-owned farmland. This data, together with information on the propagation biology of the local plant species, is being used to build a restoration database for different landforms and vegetation communities. Further baseline carbon studies (soil and biomass) and detailed mapping of vegetation are planned, alongside the finalisation of the restoration plan and seed collection within Chalice-owned properties.
The study results will be initially used to inform a pilot trial restoration project, directly adjacent to the southern boundary of the Julimar State Forest. The aim is to restore habitat diversity and connectivity to enhance biodiversity and support significant fauna. The pilot trial will test different restoration techniques, develop success measured, evaluate performance and inform large-scale restoration efforts.
Fauna Surveys – Chuditch Radio-Tracking Study
The Chalice environmental team continued baseline environmental studies for the Gonnevile Project, including surveys focussing on significant fauna in the region. Fauna survey work during the year included a GPS radio-collaring study to better understand the Gonneville Project area and the broader Julimar region.
Data collected during the program will help support future environmental approvals and inform the implementation of appropriate management strategies for the Project. Data will also be used to inform where rehabilitation and creation of wildlife corridors, within and adjacent to the Gonneville Project, would most benefit species dispersal and population linkages. This will be key to Chalice’s implementation of the Gonneville Biodiversity Strategy, which will use traditional scientific research methodology in combination with citizen science and Indigenous and local knowledge, to achieve key biodiversity outcomes.
More broadly, the program will provide invaluable regional information that may address current knowledge gaps including; identification of key habitat requirements, the extent to which vegetation is used versus other land types (i.e. farmland), and how habitats are utilised in relation to foraging, dispersal, and breeding. Chalice has a role to play in the environmental stewardship of the region and looks forward to contributing to the knowledge base of key species like the chuditch.
Chalice’s low impact exploration program in the Julimar State Forest uses specialist diamond drill rigs with a small footprint and does not involve any mechanised clearing of vegetation or excavation.
Comprehensive flora, fauna and cultural heritage surveys and monitoring are being used according to industry best practice. The low-impact program is strictly governed by a Conservation Management Plan (CMP) approved by the WA Government in late 2021.
Groundwater and Surface Water
Chalice recognises that water is a critical shared resource that must be managed efficiently and responsible. Whilst our current water usage in the exploration phase is minimal, we are conducting studies to understand the potential water usage of a mining operation at Gonneville.
Our goal is to ensure that our activities do not compromise environmental values or have adverse impact on other local users. To deliver on this, and to better understand the groundwater and surface water systems at the Gonneville Project site, Chalice has been regularly sampling both groundwater and surface water since 2021. Chalice expanded the groundwater and surface water monitoring program in FY2023, with another thirteen groundwater monitoring bores added to the network.
The baseline groundwater and surface water sampling program will continue throughout the Gonneville Project development phase.
Together, the groundwater and surface water monitoring assists Chalice in better understanding the water cycle in the project area and will inform our assessment of possible impacts a potential future mine development and operation could have.