Austrian institutions provide a number of high quality, publicly available information points on mining on the internet.
The Austrian Ministry for Sustainability and Tourism, which is responsible for mining, provides a number of high quality, publicly available information points on mining, described below. They respond to the needs of stakeholders for transparency and quality information, in order to increase mining’s public perception and acceptance (SLO).
World Mining Data: In this annual publication production figures of 63 mineral commodities from 168 countries are summarized and statistically evaluated. World Mining Data thereby provide an indispensable basis for commodity forecasts and activities in minerals policy at national and European level.
Mining Information System (BergIS): The Austrian Mineral Raw Materials Act (MinroG) requires the use of automation technology to maintain details of all parties holding mining rights, together with survey maps. Information can be viewed and printed in the form of a geographical map, and searches can be performed by place name and by party holding mining rights.
Raw Material Information System (IRIS): The Interactive System is the updated web version of the Metallogenic Map of Austria. The System is considered one of the world’s leading raw material information systems and should be regarded as Austria’s contribution to pillar 2 of the European Commission’s Raw Materials Initiative.
Stakeholders benefiting reach from various government agencies, academia, exploration and mining companies to the general public.
The financial resources are covered in the budget of the ministry and are not published to this level of detail. 2-3 persons are working on World Mining Data and one each on the ongoing maintenance of the other two systems described here.
Evidence of success
World Mining Data is one of the main sources of production data globally; BergIS and IRIS are quoted as good practise in the EU by other governments.
The key challenge for World Mining Data is the data availability and different standards in countries around the world. For BergIS and IRIS it was also data, but here mainly the digitalisation of analog data, which was also available only in different standards.
Potential for learning or transfer
The BergIS and IRIS systems could similarly be implemented in other European countries. Especially IRIS might be a good starting point for international exploration and mining companies looking for geological information.