Tailings Database and Portal

It is estimated that there are approximately 18,000 TSFs worldwide, of which approximately 3,500 are currently active. However, as no global public register of TFSs exists, the precise scale of the risks is unclear (as is which company is responsible for which facilities).

As institutional investors in the mining industry, and in the absence of such a TSF register or common public reporting standards, the Investor Mining & Tailings Safety Initiative requested data from the global mining industry on each of their TSFs.

This letter was sent to a broad group of companies - those likely to operate tailings facilities.

Following discussions with investor partners, the number of companies contacted has increased from the number announced in April 2019. (This has led to a change in the % of recorded responses below).

As of 5th May 2021, 44 of the top 50 mining companies have made disclosures, leading to information about thousands of individual tailings dams/facilities being made public on company websites.

Over 86% of the mining industry (specifically, 86% of publicly listed mining companies by market capitalisation) have responded, and all 23 of 23 publicly owned companies that are members of the International Council on Mining & Metals (ICMM) responded and fully disclosed tailings dams/facilities. 

Of the 721 companies contacted, the breakdown of responders were:

  • 341 responded (representing 47% of the companies contacted)
  • 188 confirmed they did not have tailings facilities (representing 26%)
  • 114 confirmed they did have tailings facilities and made a full disclosure
  • 39 companies have not yet published their disclosure on a website or have asked for extra time to complete their disclosure
  • 183 have not yet responded (25% of companies).
  • 197 did not respond, but it has been since confirmed that the company does not have relevant facilities (27%).

Breaking down these figures further for the mining sector only, preliminary analysis indicates:

  • 44 of the world’s top 50 largest mining companies responded
  • 95% of the top 50 largest mining companies by market capitalisation responded
  • 86% of the industry (by market capitalization) responded
  • All 23 out of 23 publicly listed members of the International Council of Mining & Metals responded.

A Press Release on Company Disclosures is available here (17 June 2019)

For a list of company disclosures, please click here or email [email protected].

Note: The total number of companies contacted has increased since the initial, 5 April 2019, disclosure request. If you represent a company with responsibility for Tailings Storage Facilities, but have not received our request, please contact [email protected]


The new disclosures generated by this request have been gathered and presented in the Global Tailings Portal, which freely displays details of over 1800 facilities, and has been a useful resource for academic work on the topic of tailings (e.g. see here).