Under the 2015 Paris Agreement, 195 countries pledged to limit global warming to well below 2.0°C, and ideally not more than 1.5°C above preindustrial levels. That target, if pursued, would manifest in decarbonization across industries, creating major shifts in commodity demand for the mining industry and likely resulting in declining global mining revenue pools. Mining-portfolio evaluation must now account for potential decarbonization of other sectors. The mining industry has only just begun to set emission-reduction goals.
Current targets published by mining companies range from 0 to 30 percent by 2030, far below the Paris Agreement goals. Mines theoretically can fully decarbonize (excluding fugitive methane) through operational efficiency, electrification, and renewable-energy use. Capital investments are required to achieve most of the decarbonization potential, but certain measures, such as the adoption of renewables, electrification, and operational efficiency, are economical today for many mines.
Realizing the full benefits of renewable energies is about more than just installing solar panels or wind turbines, it requires a willingness to rethink your operational processes and how you do your job. Energy is one of the largest expenses of mining companies, accounting for approx. 30 percent. total cash operating expenses. Mining companies have the option
of reducing their energy costs by up to 25% in existing installations and 50% in new mines thanks to an efficient energy management program with renewable energy as the main component. In line with the energy sector, mining organizations can play an important and beneficial role in accelerating the transformation of grids around the world.