Climate change and its impact on mining

The focus on environmentally friendly practices and environmental issues like climate change has been a massive push over the past few years, and one of the industries that has had to adapt its practices more than others is the mining industry. Due to the fact that many mines are located in areas that can suffer from challenging conditions and extreme weather, the impact of climate change has been dramatic over the past few years, with more and more companies becoming aware of the impact it can have on their operation. Here, we’re taking a closer look at how climate change has affected the industry and the different ways companies will need to begin evaluating risks and adapting their methods to cope.

Due to the location of most mines around the globe, climate change will need to be much more of a consideration than it was once before. While climate data is one of the facets that is incorporated within mining projects, the condition changes are not always considered. Because mines are generally located in a certain area for a very long time, due to the exploration, design and permitting, construction, production, closure and post-closure mine lifecycle, weather changes can have a significant impact on a mine. Simple things like storm water, wastewater treatment and collection systems, all the way to how buildings and infrastructure and biodiversity can be impacted by extreme weather conditions caused by climate change should continually be risk assessed by companies looking to ensure that their operation’s productivity remains stable, and their employee’s safety remains a priority.

In order to comply with regulations on the environment that more and more governments are beginning to put in place, more businesses are adapting to a clean power business models. A number of mining businesses will be looking to implement a range of eco-friendly exploration drill rigs and other machinery models in order to not only help reduce their carbon footprint, but also to help ensure that their businesses remain as productive as possible while complying with these new regulations. There are a number of pieces of innovative machinery and equipment that have been introduced to help the construction and mining industry in particular develop a far more eco-friendly outlook, and to help them deliver clean power business models for the future.

The necessity of assessments, planning and adaptations is growing, and climate change has already become an issues for the industry. One of the major issues that has been noted in the industry is the change in the Canadian Arctic, with early thawing creating an issue with the vital ice road truck deliveries in the area which go towards the diamond mines there. Nevertheless, global warming has already created access to a huge range of reserves, meaning the market has the chance to expand even further. Climate change and changing environmental regulations around the globe are certain to continue having an impact on the industry, but as long as the mining company remains flexible and adaptable, the impact on productivity and output should be limited.