Social Impact Assessment (SIA)

The Mineral Resources Act contains two provisions, §76 and §77, which regulate the Socio-Economic/Socials Impacts from mineral resource activities.

These provisions outline that the Applicant must carry out a social sustainability assessment (SSA) and prepare a SSA report (from now on SIA report), prior to the Government of Greenland can approve mineral resource activities, which have significant impacts on social conditions. These activities only include mine construction and mine operation. This means that an exploitation licence is not granted unless the Government of Greenland approves the SIA report of the Applicant.

The Social Impact Assessment Report (SIA Report)

The SIA Report must demonstrate, describe and assess the direct and indirect impacts of the activity on social conditions, as well as the interaction between the conditions, mutual impact between and cumulative effects of the impact on the conditions. Besides this general requirement, §18 of the Mineral Resources Act states that the Government of Greenland must lay down to what extent a mineral resource company (licensee) must:

·         use Greenland workers

·         use Greenland enterprises for contracts, supplies and services

·         process exploited mineral resources in Greenland.

The SIA Report therefore must, based on the conditions of Greenland’s businesses and of Greenland’s labour market’s at the time of applying, demonstrate to what extent will the activities involve Greenlandic workers and enterprises, and processing of minerals within Greenland. Please see The Guidelines on the process and preparation of the SIA report for mineral projects.

The SIA process

(draft tor)

To secure early involvement of stakeholders in Greenland (e.g. Greenlandic workers and enterprises), the Applicant must prepare a Draft Terms of Reference (Draft ToR) for the SIA.  

The Draft ToR must be submitted to the authorities, who subsequently will publish it for 35-day-long public consultation on the Government’s website,  

After consultation period, the Licencee must revise the Draft ToR to incorporate comments from stakeholders. The Applicant then must submit the revised ToR to the authorities for approval.

Drafting the
SIA Report

Once the revised ToR is approved by the authorities, the Applicant can prepare the Social Impact Assessment Report (SIA Report).


Once the Draft SIA Report fulfills the minimum requirements, it will be published for an 8-week-long public consultation on the Government’s website 

During the 8 weeks, the Applicant must hold public consultation meetings in towns and settlements significantly affected by the mineral resource activities.  

When the consultation period ends, the applicant has to revise the SIA Report based on the comments submitted during the public consultation period.  Finally, the applicant has to submit the revised SIA Report for approval by the Government.

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