Impoundment Management

We manage impoundment facilities at active, inactive and closed sites around the world to store primarily two types of material—bauxite mine tailings and bauxite residue.

We design our impoundments to our internal and international standards. We operate and maintain these facilities in accordance with the design and close them in line with location regulations. We strive to achieve a comprehensive understanding of our impoundment risks and opportunities, implement suitable and effective controls, and manage our impoundments safely and efficiently.

In 2020, we implemented a mandated Global Impoundment Policy to ensure our impoundments comply with our internal standards and guidelines, the Global Industry Standard on Tailings Management or the laws and regulations of the country in which a facility is located (whichever are higher).

Our strategic long-term goal for bauxite residue addresses a key challenge—reduce bauxite residue land storage requirements per metric ton of alumina produced by 15 percent by 2030 from a 2015 baseline.

Through 2020, we achieved a 12.8 percent reduction against the baseline. We expect to see continued improvement with enhanced solar drying and residue filtration technologies.

Bauxite Residue Land Requirements