Research funded by AusAID’s Mongolia country program specifically targets Mongolia’s development challenges. Some of the highlights of this AusAID-funded research are listed below.
Developing a cost-benefit analysis of mining sites in Mongolia
Mongolia’s environmental degradation has increased since the 1990s. This is due in part, to poor implementation of environmental policies and a lack of transparency in decision-making on commercial developments, including mines.
Because of this, Australia funded the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to develop a methodology for conducting cost benefit analyses of mining operations in Mongolia.
The objectives of the research were:
- to inform policy makers and civil society about the welfare issues and true economic costs of degrading ecosystem services as a result of mining development in Mongolia
- to demonstrate the value of considering ecosystem services when developing mining projects and maintaining them.
The activity was part of a broader UNDP program, implemented in cooperation with the Mongolian Ministry of Nature, Environment and Tourism.
There was a high level of interest from international and national experts in the activity, reflecting the relevance of the research. Recommendations included further testing and fine-tuning of the existing model. Also recommended was a Mongolian Government review of existing data collection systems at the local and national level, to ensure a greater pool of data for future studies.
As Mongolia still has a lot of strategic decisions to make related to mining, the tool can be an important mechanism to make better informed decisions in the future.
More information can be found on the UNDP website [external link].
Developing a cost-benefit analysis of mining sites in Mongolia—Annual Report 2011