Our lives are dependent on oil, gas and mineral resources that come from the earth. Everything we use in daily life - iron ore, copper, aluminum, natural gas, oil and many other minerals - if it hasn’t been grown, it has been mined or drilled. The development of a country’s oil, gas and mineral resources can generate significant taxes and royalties that can benefit its citizens. Additionally, the local communities who live nearby or host extractives operations can benefit from the economic development, skills training, jobs and revenues spurred by extractives development. At the same time, extractives operations can cause significant changes to the environment and to local communities that can lead to disagreements, protest, conflict and sometimes violence. Moreover, in some places, mining, oil and gas activities can give rise to or exacerbate armed conflict.
In July 2016, OEF launched the Shared Resources program to focus on how local communities who are impacted by extractives development can have a greater role in the decisions that determine if, when and how oil, gas and mining activities will be developed. The program considers two questions:
- What are the most effective mechanisms and networks for local and community representation and participation in the extractives development process?
- How can these mechanisms and networks address the local dimensions of violence and reduce the risk of wider armed conflict?
Shared Resources works from a third party perspective to strengthen local voices and community participation in extractives governance to avoid the risk of violence. Program components include:
- Direct engagement with communities, civil society, governments and the private sector in specific sites to provide access to information, expertise and support to integrate community participation into resource development, especially in the early phases;
- The launching of a knowledge hub to gather and share information on the effectiveness of community participation mechanisms across the resource development decision chain from deciding to extract the resource to the investment of revenues; and
- Engagement and partnership to share information, leverage local level impacts and influence policy approaches.
As the program develops, more information will become available on the website. Inquiries can be made to Sharon Flynn, Director, Shared Resources at firstname.lastname@example.org.