Tag Archives: Newmont

Newmont looks to expand gold production leadership with Newcrest bid

Newmont has submitted a non-binding proposal to acquire 100% of Newcrest Mining by way of a scheme of arrangement in a proposed transaction that, it says, would combine two of the sector’s top senior gold producers, and set the standard for sustainable and responsible gold mining.

Newmont’s proposal to combine with Newcrest is on the basis of 0.380 Newmont shares per Newcrest share, which would result in the combined company being 30% owned by Newcrest and 70% owned by Newmont. This $16.9 billion offer is at a 21% premium to the share price of Newcrest prior to the announced bid.

It follows the prior receipt of an indicative, non-binding and conditional proposal from Newmont to acquire Newcrest at an exchange ratio of 0.363 Newmont shares for each Newcrest share, Newcrest said.

Newcrest produced 1.9 Moz of gold and 121,000 t of copper in its 2022 financial year, while Newmont’s 2022 full-year guidance was 6 Moz of attributable gold production.

Newmont, already the world’s biggest gold miner by production, said: “This represents a compelling opportunity for the shareholders of both companies to share in the upside of putting together two complementary businesses.”

Tom Palmer, President and CEO of Newmont, said: “We believe a combination of Newmont and Newcrest presents a powerful value proposition to our respective shareholders, workforce and the communities in which we operate. The proposed transaction would join industry-leading portfolios of assets and projects to create long-term value across the combined global business, and we welcome the consideration of Newcrest’s Board of Directors.”

Newmont’s proposal is subject to certain customary conditions, including due diligence to the satisfaction of both parties, entry into a scheme implementation agreement and a recommendation from the Newcrest Board of Directors that Newcrest shareholders vote in favour of the proposal.

Sustainable mining solutions to meet net-zero targets

Mining is an essential process that has become even more critical as the world moves towards a greater energy transition. Minerals are a crucial component in clean energy technologies such as electric vehicles, solar panels and batteries, and the demand for these minerals is increasing, Howden’s Livio Salvestro says.*

According to the International Energy Agency, the demand for certain minerals to support the transition is projected to increase more than twentyfold by 2040. Meeting global carbon reduction targets is essential to mitigating the effects of climate change and the mining industry will play a key role in this effort. Mining practices must adapt and evolve to be more environmentally friendly and help decarbonise operations. In line with global efforts to meet the Paris Agreement objective, mining companies are setting targets to reduce their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

A PwC survey of CEOs in 2021 showed 76% of global mining and metals executives were concerned about climate change and environmental damage, up from 57% a year earlier. And 70% of global mining executives said they planned to increase their long-term investments in sustainability and environmental, social and governance (ESG) initiatives.

Challenges in decarbonising the industry

There are several ways mines can reduce their carbon footprint, but moving to a 100% electric mine would represent a transformational shift for underground mine operations where diesel engines have dominated for over 100 years. Underground diesel equipment represents one of the biggest environmental challenges a mine faces. Switching to an electric energy source can significantly impact mines, reducing their ventilation shaft and tunnel sizes; the size of their fans and heating and cooling systems; their carbon footprint; and their capital investment.

Diesel equipment can also represent a significant financial burden within a mine’s ventilation cost footprint, so moving to electric sources while updating ventilation solutions can be highly effective for improving overall environmental credentials. While progress has been made, which will result in future benefits, there are opportunities for the mining industry to reduce energy consumption and emissions through a combination of advanced sustainable technologies, actionable insight into mine operations and automation – solutions that exist today.

Energy efficiency in mining

Digital advancements are enabling the industry to become more efficient, safe and productive by collecting, analysing and implementing data to optimise mine conditions, processes and maintenance decisions. Digital technologies and automation can also be applied to ventilation.

Ventilation is a vital process in a mine’s operation. It is necessary for providing fresher air and, in some instances, cooling the working environment, clearing blast fumes and diluting exhaust fumes and gases generated by mining.

This means it needs to run consistently and reliably, often accounting for substantial operating costs and up to 40-50% of a mine’s total energy consumption. Advanced technology and more efficient ventilation systems can reduce costs and significantly contribute to a mine’s carbon reduction objectives.

Livio Salvestro is Global Mining Team Leader at Howden

The primary goals of ongoing mine ventilation developments are to mitigate environmental impact, as already outlined, by reducing GHG emissions and improving underground air quality. They are also necessary to create efficiency that is sustainable and reliable, so a mine continues to produce energy savings throughout its lifecycle. Optimising overall health and safety models is crucial, which rely on automation for unprecedented operational capabilities.

There are several solutions to support these goals, including electric mine air heating, which provides a simple and safe solution with zero emissions. Through a modular design approach, these systems use industrial grade, Incoloy tubular elements selected for optimal functionality and maintenance.

Optimised ventilation systems are also available to drive energy savings and contribute to net zero commitments. Products like Ventsim™ CONTROL utilise intelligent software that communicates with hardware devices to remotely monitor, control and automate airflow and heating and cooling systems.

Thermal heat recovery can result in operational flexibility and reduced emissions. By employing a system of heat transfer coils, liquid pumping stations and control and automation technology, the mine can generate heat recovery using potential sources like waste heat from mine exhaust air, central boilers, power generators, and compressors or green sources such as geothermal energy.

Ammonia refrigeration systems offer a sustainable solution with no harmful CO2 or HFC emissions. Ammonia is considered the “green refrigerant” and has been used for many years, however, it is now coming into its own with the demands for reducing the footprint of hydrocarbon and HCFC refrigerants that can affect the atmosphere.

Demonstrable ventilation success

Companies like Howden have been successfully supplying these green mine ventilation solutions for years, and the results are clear.

The Oyu Tolgoi mine in Mongolia required a new indirect air heating, ventilation and filtration solution. Howden developed a unique thermal heat recovery solution that included airlock access, pipe work engineering, main and bypass damper, and fan outlet. Howden’s solution can be used as a reference for the remainder of the mine’s development. Each heater house was designed to capture 22 MW of waste heat from the hot water system.

An electric heating system was supplied to a high-grade underground mine in northern British Columbia, Canada. The system included two direct-fired, hybrid M.I.D mine air heaters and enabled the mine’s electric mine air heating system to take advantage of low electricity prices.

Ventilation automation has been a part of several large-scale mine operations for decades and some mines have experienced reductions of more than 50-60% in energy consumption and 11,500 t of CO2 emissions.

The Newmont Éléonore mine in Quebec, Canada, brought in a Ventsim CONTROL system, which included ventilation monitoring stations and the automation of all ventilation equipment. To date, there has been a 43% reduction in mine heating costs, a 56% drop in underground ventilation electricity costs and a 73% decrease in the cost of surface ventilation electricity.

Recognising the proven benefits of Howden’s Ventilation on Demand system, Newmont – Éléonore won the Eureka Prize from Écotech Québec.

As a pioneer, Howden engineered ammonia refrigeration systems in mines during the 1970s. More recently, the company supplied ammonia screw chillers at the Prominent Hill mine in South Australia for OZ Minerals. In partnership with the customer, Howden created solutions that had the highest functionality while supporting their net-zero targets.

As environmental pressure builds, especially on mining companies, now is the time to implement proven solutions to support a cleaner energy future.

*Livio Salvestro is Global Mining Team Leader at Howden

Newmont transitions to Sandvik AutoMine tele-remote ops at Cerro Negro

Newmont says its Cerro Negro underground operations in Argentina have transitioned to tele-remote mode with the implementation of the Sandvik AutoMine® platform.

The transition, completed last year, is part of Newmont’s Full Potential structured and continuous improvement program that began in 2014. This program has since delivered over $4 billion in value, while serving as Newmont’s key vehicle for reducing costs and boosting productivity across its operating sites and functions.

In the company’s recent September quarter results call, Newmont Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Rob Atkinson, confirmed that Cerro Negro had become the first mine in Argentina to implement the AutoMine system for tele-remote underground loading and hauling.

“The implementation of this technology has eliminated safety risks associated with operator exposure underground, has allowed for the recovery of more ore from each of the stopes, has reduced equipment damage, and, really importantly in the Argentinian context, increased underground working time,” he said.

“We’ve had tremendous success with tele-remote operations at our Australian and Canadian underground mines, and this is yet another example of the value added through the rapid replication of leading practices across our global operations.”

Cerro Negro has three high-grade underground operating mines – Eureka, Mariana Central and Mariana Norte – and two underground deposits being developed, Emilia and San Marcos, as well as five other deposits in late-stage evaluation for development to expand the existing operations in the Marianas Complex and establish operations in the Eastern District.

The extensive Cerro Negro complex has several other deposits and exploration targets, including an open-pit mine known as Vein Zone and one cyanide leach processing facility with Merrill Crowe recovery yielding gold recoveries of 90-97%.

S5 System tapping AI technology to solve mine asset management issues

Australia-based engineering company S5 System says it is out to solve three common mining workplace problems using artificial intelligence-based technology that takes minutes to install, is affordable and offers rapid payback on investment.

The company has produced three OEM-agnostic asset management products and is advancing research and development to expand the application range of its specialised monitors, sensors and control devices.

S5 System Founder and CEO, Davoud Nassehi (pictured at the recent IMARC event), says the company’s current focus is on growing awareness of three market-ready products – BoltTight, which monitors the tightness of bolted joints; WearMon, wear liners with real-time monitoring; and GETsmart, a ground engaging tool (GET) dislodgement detection system.

They are currently being used on Western Australia mine sites by the likes of Newmont and Mineral Resources Ltd.

Nassehi says he saw an urgent need for the products in his time working in the mining and telecommunications industries.

“Knowing that industries are going to Industry 4.0, I wanted to help them transition from Industry 3.0 and increase the available insights into machinery, plant and feed processes with more realistic data to use in later lifecycle stages,” he said.

“It makes the workplace safer, more secure and more agile, and saves money by allowing users to know what’s happening in their systems, through monitoring and all the good things that are becoming possible by using IoT.”

The wireless products can be fitted to any equipment brand, are suitable for the harshest mining environments and don’t rely on cameras to provide feedback, according to S5. Installation is not dependent on existing infrastructure, Nassehi added.

“They are plug-and-play products,” he said. “They require zero maintenance, are self-diagnostic and the batteries don’t need to be replaced for years.”

BoltTight uses patented technology to constantly monitor the compression force in bolted joints. The washers are designed in standard metric and imperial sizes, and send data using ZigBee wireless technology to a hub that collects data from all the nearby washers and transfers it to the server for analysis, monitoring and data storage purposes.

Any critical failure can be detected, and a real-time audio-visual alarms notify the operation and maintenance team of the exact location of the failed bolt in the plant’s 3D models, according to the company.

“Currently, in the market, there are very few bolted-connection intelligent solutions,” Nassehi said. “Some use ultrasonic or other non-destructive test tools, which are expensive and require manually checking every joint by experienced technicians. There are smart bolt options attempted in the market, however, embedding electronics inside a bolt compromises its specification and integrity.”

“Miners have been looking for a reliable way of detecting GET failures and locating failed parts for years”

Having experienced first-hand the expensive and time-consuming job of replacing wear liners in equipment such as mills, crushers, feeders and transfer chutes, Nassehi conceived the WearMon system.

The non-invasive online condition monitoring system can be directly installed on any type of mining plant liner material such as rubber, metallic, ceramic, polyurethane and polyethylene, it claims. Via battery-powered wireless wear sensors on one of the bolts, it offers accurate real-time and historical wear data; machine learning; predictive, condition-based maintenance; suggested shutdown planning information; accurate inventory requirements; and service forecasts, Nassehi says.

“This system continuously monitors the remaining thickness at each sensor location and reports to the server,” he said. “Information then is processed on the sever and forms a basis to predict the remaining life. If the next scheduled maintenance state is pre-set, then the shutdown date can be entered directly into the software and, if there is a planned shutdown date entered into system then the software algorithm will determine which liners will need to be changed out and predict the number and location of the required material accordingly.

“Alternatively, if maintenance dates are flexible, the system generates predictions with accurate estimate of the serviceable life of the liners and suggests a replacement date.”

S5’s GETsmart system also has sensors at its foundation. They are inserted into a shovel’s GET and shrouds, and connect wirelessly to the in-cab monitor, which actively scans all sensors. When it detects a tooth break, a real-time audio-visual alarm notifies the operator and they can remotely stop the downstream crusher.

Nassehi said unlike competitor options, the GETsmart system doesn’t rely on cameras – which can get dirty very quickly in a mining environment and so impair visibility – for feedback.

“Estimated to cost the mining industry between 1-5% of total production each year, broken GET are a massive global problem for the mining industry,” he said. “Miners have been looking for a reliable way of detecting GET failures and locating failed parts for years.”

Newmont hits 100 Mt automation milestone using Cat Command for hauling at Boddington

Western Australia’s largest gold mine, Boddington, has surpassed the 100 Mt milestone for material safely hauled using Cat® MineStar™ Command for hauling with the gold industry’s first autonomous haulage system (AHS) fleet, the OEM says.

Boddington, a deep open-pit surface mine owned by Newmont, delivered 696,000 oz of gold and 163,000 gold-equivalent ounces in 2021.

The mine’s fleet today includes 36 Cat 793F autonomous and four 793D staffed mining trucks to haul material, and the conversion to AHS was one of the fastest in the industry, spanning approximately seven months to roll out all 36 trucks equipped with Command, according to Caterpillar.

Newmont invested $150 million in its autonomous haulage project with goals to improve mine safety and productivity, while extending the life of the mine. The first 231-t Cat 793F was converted to autonomous operation in March 2021. A total of seven trucks from Newmont’s existing fleet were retrofitted with Command for hauling, while 29 trucks were new models.

In October 2021, the last of the 36 autonomous trucks went into operation at the mine, with the mine reaching the 100 Mt of material autonomously hauled benchmark by the end of October 2022.

Kosie Bolton, Technology Site Manager for Caterpillar, said: “The time period between rollout of the mine’s first autonomous 793F truck to full conversion of the mine’s autonomous fleet to achieving 100 Mt autonomously hauled was incredibly short. This is a true testament of the great teamwork between Boddington’s talented and dedicated workforce, Cat dealer WesTrac and Caterpillar. The supporting AHS projects will help to improve data understanding and drive operational excellence through data utilisation.”

Including the autonomous trucks, equipment equipped with MineStar Terrain, and site autonomous vehicles and trucks, the mine has 200 connected assets. An entirely new AHS intelligence office, where all the autonomous trucks and connected assets can be viewed and collected data analysed, was also completed and dedicated in October 2022. The new workspace brings together all AHS team members in a single space with tiered seating and screens at the front of the room, Caterpillar says.

James Earl, AHS Control Room Superintendent for the Newmont Boddington Mine, said: “Having everyone together in the new office allows us to post issues on the screens in front of all workers to quickly address them together. We are extremely proud to deliver the gold industry’s first autonomous haul truck fleet at Boddington. This will help extend the mine’s life, reduce safety risks and lower costs. The project’s record implementation is just another example of Newmont’s trademark ability to set and achieve ambitious goals.”

On top of this milestone, Caterpillar and Newmont agreed in November 2021 to collaborate on a number of mining technology initiatives that provide industry leading outcomes for safety, productivity, sustainability and cost.

Newmont Porcupine racing towards start up of state-of-the-art water treatment plant

Newmont’s Porcupine mine has hoted Ontario Premier, Doug Ford, on site, alongside members of his cabinet, to announce its new state-of-the-art water treatment plant at the Canadian mine.

Throughout 2021 and 2022, Newmont made a $160 million investment into the new plant, which will benefit the entire ecosystem and surrounding watershed through the collection, treatment and return of impacted water. Provincially, this plant will have among the lowest effluent discharge limits within the mining sector, the company claims.

The investment, Newmont says, demonstrates how industrial and environmental interests can be aligned, and is a strong example of the company’s commitment to sustainable and responsible mining.

Newmont anticipates that construction of the plant will be completed before year end and begin discharging in 2023. Once operational, the plant will return up to 13 million cu.m of treated clean water to the Mattagami, Frederickhouse and Upper Kapuskasing watersheds.

The company said: “After more than a century of mining in Timmins, the next phase of operations at Porcupine is an opportunity to support regreening the region, significantly improve site water management and support the local watersheds while maintaining employment and economic benefits for Northern Ontario communities, local First Nations and the government.”

Since 1910, the historic Porcupine mining district has produced more than 67 Moz of gold, with the modern Porcupine mine being the largest employer in Timmins, with more than 1,200 employees and contractors, the company says.

Dawid Pretorius, General Manager for Newmont Porcupine, said: “Investments like the new water treatment plant that we are announcing today are only made possible by the steadfast commitments of our employees, all levels of government and our Indigenous communities and partners. I would like to thank all involved for their dedication to upholding our reputation as an industry leader in safe, sustainable and responsible mining.”

LDO Group’s Rokion battery-electric light vehicle refocus starts to pay off

LDO Group is making serious headway in deploying Rokion’s ground-up-design electric light vehicles across Australia, with the New South Wales-based distributor hoping to have three machine trials in place before the end of the year.

LDO is focused on the underground mining and tunnelling industries, specialising in systems, processes, mine planning and training. It has been the exclusive distributor of Canada-made Rokion battery-powered vehicles in Australasia since 2018, having deployed vehicles across the soft- and hard-rock space.

The latest Rokion deployment LDO Group is celebrating is at Agnico Eagle Mines’ Fosterville gold operation in Victoria where a Rokion R400 was recently shown off alongside a Sandvik LH518B at a launch ceremony at the gold operation.

Alan Ross, General Manager of LDO Group, said the R400 vehicle – a platform able to accommodate three passengers in a utility vehicle setup or up to 12 in a passenger crew variant – has been deployed as part of a six-month trial at the operation.

“They (the Fosterville team) plan to use this in a people carrier configuration,” Ross told IM. “It will transport people to and from the operation.”

Considering the ramp-supported Fosterville operation goes below 800-m depth, this will present a good test for the R400’s re-generation capacity and uphill performance.

Rokion says the vehicle, which has 100 kWh of battery capacity, was engineered for the demands of underground mining and is its most adaptive platform design, capable of transporting a large crew in mine applications. Like all Rokion vehicles, it incorporates lithium iron phosphate battery chemistry, which, the company says, is the safest battery chemistry currently available.

The vehicle heading underground at Fosterville was previously deployed at a coal mining operation in Queensland, yet Ross says LDO Group is now re-focusing its efforts on the hard-rock mining space.

This has already seen the company partner with Newmont on an R400 deployment at its Tanami underground operation in the Northern Territory of Australia where it was initially used to transport team members up and down the mine.

Newmont said last year that early indicators had shown the vehicle had the capability to complete several trips to and from the bottom of the Tanami mine without requiring recharging.

Ross agreed with the Newmont assessment, explaining that the company was expected to re-deploy the same unit to the Tanami operation with an additional battery cooling module later this year.

“The ambient temperatures can reach 50°C in the Tanami desert, so we have equipped the vehicle with this new module to cope with such extremes,” he explained.

The company also has two R200 units – which include a four-passenger crew truck and a two-passenger utility truck – in Australia awaiting redeployment. One of these vehicles recently completed a successful stint at a tunnelling operation in the country.

LDO is also engaged with another mining company with an operation in New South Wales seeking to trial Rokion’s smallest battery-electric platform, the R100.

The R100 series includes a four-passenger crew truck and a two-passenger utility truck, with both models built on the same frame dimensions and available in ramp-ready configurations.

“We’re currently focused on these three key customers and supporting them in terms of the deployments and on-going operations,” Ross said.

In addition to regular site visits from LDO personnel to support maintenance and operations staff at the underground mines, LDO staff are able to remotely download data logs for these machines on a daily basis, assessing if there is potential for optimising the operation or if maintenance work may need to be conducted.

With many companies in the battery-electric light vehicle conversion space in Australia struggling to get hold of donor diesel vehicles, Ross says mining companies are increasingly appreciating Rokion’s ground-up approach.

“We have a fantastic OEM partner to rely on for these vehicles and we at LDO are able to support them in the best possible way,” he said. “We don’t have to rely on a different vendor to obtain the base machine; the design, engineering, manufacturing and testing are all performed under the Rokion roof, ensuring quality from concept to delivery.”

Ross said Rokion is continually working on design improvements and new machines based on industry feedback, with a newly-designed R200 vehicle set to bridge the gap between the existing R200 and the larger R400.

The latest in Rokion’s R200 Series is an 11-passenger crew truck built on a heavier frame and suspension construction than previous models, Kipp Sakundiak says

Kipp Sakundiak, CEO of Rokion, was happy to provide more details of this to IM: “The latest in our R200 Series is an 11-passenger crew truck built on a heavier frame and suspension construction than our previous models, all the while maintaining the simplicity and performance of dual drive motors.”

Sakundiak said the new model was robust and powerful, at the same time offering a comfortable ride for all crew members.

He added: “There is a lot of adaptability built into the new platform, including configurations for soft- and hard-rock applications. It’s one of our most versatile designs.”

Schlam delivers 1,500th Hercules dump body in Australia

Schlam has now reached the milestone of manufacturing its 1,500th Hercules dump body in Australia, with the dump body in question delivered to Glencore’s Mt Owen complex in the Hunter Valley of New South Wales.

Now in its 14th incarnation, the Schlam Hercules has become the dump body of choice for many of the most significant Tier 1 operators, OEM truck builders and mining contractors in Australia, Schlam says.

Schlam Chief Executive Officer, Matt Thomas, said it was a team effort to reach this milestone.

“Our manufacturing division – Schlam Payload Solutions – is filled with some of the most dedicated and hardworking individuals I’ve ever met. And, when they work together, anything is possible.

“The pandemic and supply chain concerns have pressured our team, however, they have managed these challenges superbly while maintaining our commitment to quality and customer service.”

The first Hercules was manufactured in Australia in 2003, and it took 17 years to reach the 1,000th milestone. It took the company just 22 months to then reach the 1,500th mark.

Thomas says that long-term national supply contracts with BHP, Fortescue, Glencore, Northern Star Resources, Newmont and other significant miners mean that the Hercules is set to continue along this upward growth path.

“We are creating efficiencies in our manufacturing processes through robotics, automation and ‘LEAN thinking’ to support this growth while maintaining quality,” he said.

“We’re also growing our sales and aftersales teams, ensuring that customer service is exceptional at every step of their experience with Schlam. We pride ourselves on following our products into the field and believe this has been a critical element in our growth.

“I thank the whole team – no matter where they work in the company – for helping us reach this milestone, and I look forward to many more to come.”

Newmont’s Gosteva urges action to achieve mining industry’s decarbonisation goals

Partnerships between miners and mining equipment, technology and service (METS) providers will prove key in solving the emissions reductions and sustainability targets mining companies have set for 2030 and beyond, Victoria Gosteva, Decarbonisation Program Manager at Newmont, said at the SME MineXchange Annual Conference & Expo in Salt Lake City today.

While outlining Newmont’s Energy & Decarbonization Program on stage, Gosteva made important statements about how the wider industry could decarbonise its operations and hit the goals it has set. Newmont, itself, has set a goal of reducing its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by more than 30% by 2030, with an ultimate goal of being net zero carbon by 2050.

Gosteva, urging actions over the near term, said partnerships with the METS community would be needed to set the companies on the right track to hit their sustainability goals, explaining that it was not only the technology-readiness element that needed to be addressed, but also the required infrastructure to, for example, charge electric vehicles.

“We can no longer afford to be fast followers as an industry,” she said. “There is really not that much time left to reach the 2030 targets.”

She said the investment community was also taking note of the need to decarbonise mine sites, with emissions likely to become a big contributor of company valuation metrics in the future.

Focusing on Newmont’s journey, in particular, she highlighted the $500 million the company committed over five years toward climate change initiatives back in 2020.

In addition to a number of PPA agreements looking to decarbonise the power grid of many of its remote mines, she also highlighted the 2021 signing of a strategic alliance with Caterpillar Inc to deliver a fully connected, automated, zero carbon emitting, end-to-end mining system, as well as a number of “energy efficiency” type of projects related to automation, data analytics and other projects that came under these initiatives.

Many of these projects were being helped by an enhanced investment system and process that incorporates and addresses emissions through an embedded carbon pricing mechanism. Gosteva said adding an emission calculator into these models where every project has an emission aspect in the investment review saw many of these projects develop a solid business case.

One project that has been helped by this is the strategic alliance with Caterpillar that will see the introduction of first-of-a-kind battery-electric haulage technology and automation at the gold miner’s Cripple Creek and Victor (CC&V) and Tanami mines in the USA and Australia, respectively.

Under the agreement, Newmont plans to provide a preliminary investment of $100 million as the companies set initial automation and electrification goals for surface and underground mining infrastructures and haulage fleets at Newmont’s CC&V mine in Colorado, USA, and Tanami mine in Northern Territory, Australia. The goals include:

  • Introduction of an automated haulage fleet of up to 16 vehicles at CC&V planned through 2023, with a transition to haulage fleet electrification and implementation of Caterpillar’s advanced electrification and infrastructure system with delivery of a test fleet in 2026. Actions include validating first-of-a-kind battery-electric haulage technology in the years prior to full production of autonomous electric haulage equipment;
  • Caterpillar will develop its first battery electric zero-emissions underground truck to be deployed at Tanami by 2026. The deployment includes a fleet of up to 10 battery-electric underground haul trucks, supported by Caterpillar’s advanced electrification and infrastructure system. This includes first-of-a-kind battery electric haulage technology for underground mining in 2024, the introduction of battery autonomous technology in 2025, with full deployment in 2026.

Gosteva highlighted that this project – which would also see the companies work on re-using batteries for energy storage when they hit their end of life in mobile mining applications – was very important to the company achieving its goals, but acknowledged that there was no silver bullet to achieving its targets.

ICMM looks to address mining industry approach to social performance with new tools

The International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM) has published a set of practical tools to, it says, strengthen approaches to managing social performance within mining companies, to support more harmonious company-community relationships and enable positive socio-economic outcomes.

Social performance is the outcome of a company’s engagement, activities and commitments that directly and indirectly impact stakeholders, particularly the local communities that live close to mining operations. Good social performance requires companies to have robust management approaches and systems in place that avoid harm to people and planet, whilst contributing to social and economic development.

ICMM’s new tools have been designed to support companies to strengthen these capabilities, in order to build and maintain positive relationships with local communities and broader society.

Rohitesh Dhawan, CEO at ICMM, said: “Mining-related activity affects local communities and often takes place on Indigenous land. The industry has a critical role to play in creating lasting positive impact for those affected and can only achieve this through consistent approaches to social performance.

“This isn’t something that our industry has always got right, and we have seen the devastating impact it can have when it goes wrong. Just as financial and environmental risks are integrated across business decision making, these tools support companies to better integrate social risks and impacts to manage their social performance more effectively. ICMM’s social performance tools are available to the entire industry. They will support business leaders and social performance practitioners assess the maturity of social performance in their business, build competency, integrate social performance across the business and contribute to the organisational culture required to consistently avoid harm and deliver business and societal value.”

Tom Palmer, CEO of Newmont and Chair of ICMM’s CEO Social Performance Advisory Group, said: “Improving social performance will require leadership, commitment, tools and a willingness to be held to account for our impacts. I am reminded every day about the impacts our activities can have on people’s lives-our commitment to eliminating fatalities from our workplace is an example of where leadership, commitment and vigilance must exist for us to ensure our people go home safe every day.

“Improving social performance requires us to stand in the shoes of the community or those directly impacted by our activities-how do we like what we see when we look back at ourselves?”

The tools have been developed to support leaders, non-experts, and social practitioners as they work to better integrate social performance throughout their businesses. The individual tools include:

  • Accessible introduction to social performance, the value it delivers and how to achieve good performance;
  • A maturity matrix to establish where a company is on their social performance journey and guidance on developing an action plan;
  • A competency framework to help build the experience, skills and knowledge needed to manage social performance successfully;
  • Guidance on how to integrate community engagement across site-level activities;
  • Guidance on how to integrate social performance across the business as a whole; and
  • Support for leaders and decision-makers working to embed social performance into their operating model

These tools build on ICMM’s existing bank of guidance and resources on social performance.