Our Environment

​​​​​​​​Our Environment

Debswana's responsibility towards the nation of Botswana extends even to the future generations and we ensure that we conduct our business in such a way that we minimise any impact on the environment.

This, we do in partnership with the communities around our mines who have very valuable input in our environmental management programmes.

The Environment discipline is one of the four disciplines that make up our Environment, Community, Occupational Health and Safety (ECOHS) Programme. 

Our strategic focus includes environmental indicators and data, biodiversity action plans and of 'no net loss of biodiversity', the new incident reporting system, climate change, and talent within the environment function

Environmen​tal Management System (EMS)

Up to the late 1980's environmental management within Debswana was adhoc and driven largely by individual senior managers and other environmentally aware employees, but there were no formal systems in place. In this way the Game Parks at the mines had been developed and pollution prevention was treated as part of good housekeeping under the safety programme

In 1992/93 the company carried out in-depth assessments of its interaction with the environment at all its operations. This was the first step in the development of formal environmental management systems, and it has been repeated many times since then as part of the ISO 14001 process. Debswana's first formal environmental management system was developed in 1993/94 at Orapa. This was based on the British Standard 7750, which is generally recognised as the forerunner to the present ISO 14001 EMS standard.

In the mid 1990's it became clear that the ISO standard for environmental management systems was fast nearing completion and a decision was taken to adopt this new standard on all the Debswana Mines. It was also decided that the mines would seek independent certification for their environmental management systems once these were fully implemented. This was intended to illustrate the company's environmental management practices were world class.

In early 1996 Jwaneng Mine developed its first ISO 14001 based EMS. This was a paper-based system, and it soon became clear that computerisation would ultimately have to take place to handle all the documentation. In the final push towards certification, which started in early 1999, consultants were engaged to computerise the EMS and to conduct awareness training. At the same time the finishing touches were applied to a computerised register of all Botswana legislation which has a bearing on the environment. Jwaneng achieved 14001 certification in December 2000, and Orapa and Letlhakane Mines commenced with the development and implementation of an ISO based EMS during 1997, and achieved certification in March 2001.

Jwaneng Mine's achievement can be put in perspective by noting that at the time, only 122 mining and quarrying companies worldwide had achieved ISO 14001 certification.


Wildlife Conservation Debswana cares deeply for the environment within which it operates. At the mines, the company has established game parks to preserve some wildlife.

Debswana takes an active interest in conservation, and has created two viable game parks in the mining lease areas around its two principal mines, Jwaneng and Orapa. These parks provide a vital sanctuary for wildlife in areas where wildlife has otherwise been forced out through encroachment, cattle-farming and poaching.

Debswana Diamond Company actively ensures that it meets and exceeds international and local environmental regulations, and is highly committed to minimizing any negative impact diamond mining might have on the environment. The company actively promotes a culture of environmental responsibility and commitment towards sustainable development in Botswana.

Debswana clearly recognizes it's responsibility to the environment. Our mines have always followed the best international environmental management practice and each of our major operations has been awarded ISO14001 certification.

SHE Policy

It is one of the core values of Debswana Diamond Company to conduct all its operations in a manner that will minimise impact on the environment and uphold the safety and health of our employees.

We therefore commit ourselves to:

  • Continually improve our safety, occupational health and environmental performance
  • Comply with all applicable laws, regulations and other commitments

 Conservation Parks

Orapa Game Park
Orapa Game Park

The Orapa game park was formed from a core conservation area, initially developed by concerned members of the Orapa community, starting in 1985 ... read more

Jwana Game Park
Jwana Game Park

The area that was to become Jwana Game Park was initially a fenced Mine Lease Area surrounding Jwaneng mine, populated by limited numbers of ... read more