Tag Archives: renewable energy

BHP, TransAlta solar and battery storage facility set to cut Nickel West Scope 2 emissions

A new solar farm in the Northern Goldfields of Western Australia has been switched online thanks to a collaboration between BHP and renewable energy provider TransAlta, which, BHP says, will reduce Scope 2 emissions at the Nickel West northern operations by 12%.

The Northern Goldfields Solar and Battery Storage Facility is one of the world’s largest off-grid mining solar and battery energy storage systems and features about 70,000 solar panels across 90 ha of land.

The initiative, which will replace power currently generated from diesel and gas, will be a significant step towards BHP’s aim to decarbonise its operations by 30% by the 2030 financial year.

It includes a 27.4 MW solar farm at Mt Keith, and a 10.7 MW solar farm and 10.1 MW battery at Leinster, which is integrated into TransAlta’s Northern Goldfields remote power grid.

Construction on the facility began in 2022, creating more than 100 direct and indirect jobs in the Goldfields and Perth regions, and will support ongoing employment during operations.

BHP Australia President, Geraldine Slattery, said: “Renewables are increasingly powering BHP operations around the globe and this facility – the first we have built on one of our sites – is another step forward in our plans to reduce our operational greenhouse gas emissions by at least 30% by FY30, from FY20 levels.

“Nickel is in high demand for batteries and electric vehicles, and this progress is part of our commitment to delivering more sustainable, lower carbon product to our customers.”

BHP Nickel West Asset President, Jessica Farrell, said the initiative was one of many ways Nickel West was reducing its operational emissions – it was also considering wind farms in the northern and southern Goldfields.

“It’s fantastic to see the Northern Goldfields Solar and Battery Storage Facility switched on,” she said. “It’s on the back of a team of dedicated engineers, technicians and many others bringing new ideas to the table to support the development and integration of reliable and affordable renewable power to our business.

“The initiative will help Nickel West reduce Scope 2 greenhouse gas emissions at our northern operations by 12%. This will result in an estimated reduction of 54,000 t of CO2-e per annum – the equivalent of removing 23,000 combustion engine cars2 from the road each year.”

TransAlta’s President and Chief Executive Officer, John Kousinioris, said the company was excited to flick the switch on what was a ground-breaking project for the organisation.

He said: “We are excited to work together with BHP to realise this innovative solution to meet BHP’s renewable electricity needs. This facility represents a first for both companies – it’s BHP’s first on-site, large-scale renewable project globally, and it’s TransAlta’s first renewable energy facility in Australia. It’s also the first time we have combined solar and battery storage to offer a hybrid solution.

“This unique project enabled us to apply the extensive capability and technical knowledge we have to the development of a large-scale facility in a remote part of Western Australia.

“Working under our longstanding relationship with BHP, we were able to collectively solve challenges and break new ground at the same time as playing a part in WA’s exciting and rapidly accelerating transition to a cleaner energy future.”

Dyno Nobel, Fortescue sign tech alliance focused on drill and blast decarbonisation

Incitec Pivot Limited’s Dyno Nobel is to extend its supply relationship with Fortescue, with the two parties agreeing to a long-term extension that will see Dyno Nobel continue providing explosives technology and collaborating on key decarbonisation projects to assist Fortescue in reaching its ‘Real Zero’ goal.

A key focus of the new agreement is an innovative technology alliance. As part of this, Dyno Nobel will invest A$5 million ($3.2 million) in new technologies to support Fortescue’s decarbonisation efforts within its drill and blast process. The new agreement will apply across Fortescue’s Pilbara operations: Cloudbreak, Christmas Creek, Solomon and Eliwana. The Iron Bridge project, which Fortescue has a majority stake in, is supplied by Dyno Nobel under a separate contract the two companies announced last year.

Dyno Nobel Asia Pacific President, Greg Hayne, said: “We’re incredibly proud of our relationship with Fortescue who are at the forefront of efforts to decarbonise the mining industry. The agreement will see us ramp up our decarbonisation efforts which will include conversion of our MPU (mobile processing unit) fleet to renewable energy sources and investigating the use of lower carbon footprint, bio-fuel based explosives.

“This is about providing our customers with technology solutions that lower our carbon footprint and, in turn, theirs.”

Fortescue Metals CEO, Dino Otranto, said: “We’re looking forward to continuing our successful partnership with Dyno Nobel, which will deliver blasting services as well as provide new technologies to help us achieve our industry leading target of Real Zero emissions across our Australian iron ore operations.”

The agreement will provide Fortescue with the opportunity to benefit from Dyno Nobel’s commercialisation of a reduced GHG emissions DIFFERENTIAL ENERGY® solution, an explosives method that tailors the energy delivered to different rock layers within a blast hole and across a blast. The efficiencies generated through the use of DIFFERENTIAL ENERGY reduce both overall mining costs and emission volumes for customers, according to Dyno Nobel, with the reduced emissions solution able to reduce Scope 1 emissions by up to 25% in normal blasting circumstances.

Hayne said that since Dyno Nobel’s DIFFERENTIAL ENERGY technology was introduced to the Australian market in 2018 it has provided customers with production and environmental benefits.

“Fortescue has already seen the technology deliver value at their Iron Bridge operations, one of the first sites in Australia to fully benefit from DIFFERENTIAL ENERGY and the results have been very positive. We are now pleased to be increasing these advantages via a reduced emissions offering. It is just another example of our technology innovation happening on the ground.”

He said Dyno Nobel’s technology development aligned with Fortescue’s vision.

“We are looking forward to continuing our successful partnership with Fortescue which has evolved into finding innovative and sustainable solutions for the future by working together,” he said.

Mineral Resources’ achieves energy strategy milestone with Wonmunna solar installation

Mineral Resources (MinRes) says it has marked an important milestone in its energy strategy with the successful installation of a 2.1 MW solar-battery system at its Wonmunna iron ore project in the Pilbara region of Western Australia.

Located 80 km northwest of Newman, the Wonmunna mine was purchased as an undeveloped project in the 2021 financial year. First ore was achieved just five months after construction began at the site and during the 2022 financial year, production from Wonmunna ramped up to 5 Mt/y.

Installation of the 5B Maverick solar technology at the Wonmunna site – complete with more than 4,000 solar panels – was completed during the 2023 financial year. Following successful testing and optimisation works, the technology is now providing significant benefits for site operations and reducing dependency on diesel fuel, MinRes says.

The combined solar-battery system will produce more that 30% of the mine’s power requirements and ultimately cut diesel consumption by approximately 760,000 litres each year, while reducing the site’s carbon emissions by around 2,000 t/y of carbon dioxide equivalent.

In addition, the crusher at the site is powered 100% by the system during the middle of the day when renewable output meets peak plant load.

During the warmer summer months, the system can achieve more than 40% displacement on any given day – and, with a 20-year life span, it can be redeployed to other operations once Wonmunna reaches its end-of-life, MinRes says.

Chief Executive Energy, Darren Hardy, said the Wonmunna solar and battery array at Wonmunna was a positive step forward in the company’s renewable energy strategy.

“MinRes is committed to pursuing renewable energy opportunities where we can and our team has been working hard to deliver a solar array and battery solution that delivers optimum output at Wonmunna,” Hardy said. “Together with natural gas, renewables will play an important role in our energy future, and MinRes continues to pursue off-grid solar power and energy storage solutions to support our remote locations.”

Gas and LNG power stations currently supporting MinRes’ lithium operations at Mt Marion in the Goldfields and Wodgina in the Pilbara are delivering significant emissions savings, according to the company. This includes a 64 MW capable power station at Wodgina, which is the largest of its kind on a mine site in the southern hemisphere, the company says.

At the upcoming Onslow Iron project, also in the Pilbara, MinRes will install a range of energy solutions designed to offset diesel with alternative fuels and renewable energy options, energy storage, and electrification of mobile equipment and transport.

MinRes says it recognises the need for meaningful action to address climate change and is committed to investing in activities that reduce the carbon intensity of its operations and maintaining best-practice environmental, social and governance performance.

The company’s Roadmap to Net Zero Emissions outlines MinRes’ pathway towards a transition to gas, renewable energy and other emerging technologies to support its operations and reduce its carbon intensity – including the company’s goal to achieve of net-zero emissions by 2050.

GHD gets behind Green Gravity’s gravitational energy storage pursuit

Green Gravity and GHD have executed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to collaborate on the commercialisation of gravitational energy storage systems.

The MoU aims to pursue the development of new applications for the Green Gravity technology, accelerating the commercialisation of the gravitational energy storage systems technology solution using the expertise and connections of GHD, the companies say.

In a wide-ranging partnership, Green Gravity and GHD will collaborate on technical engineering, policy and regulatory matters and electricity grid connectivity practices and will work together to deliver world-class governance and processes in engineering design, they added.

The companies said: “By working in partnership, Green Gravity and GHD aim to provide a tangible example of how connectivity between the engineering services sector and the clean technology development sector can accelerate decarbonisation in the electricity system.”

Green Gravity’s energy storage system moves heavy weights vertically in legacy mine shafts to capture and release the gravitational potential energy of the weights. By using proven mechanical parts and disused mine shafts, Green Gravity’s energy storage technology is low-cost, long life and environmentally compelling, the company claims. The technology improves the economics of wind and solar power, leading to a faster and lower cost transition away from fossil fuels, it added.

Last month, the company signed a separate MoU with Yancoal to study the potential of the energy storage technology at the mining company’s former Austar coal mine in New South Wales.

According to Mark Swinnerton, Founder and CEO of Green Gravity, the partnership demonstrates the potential impact of integration and connectivity between providers of new energy solutions to support Australia’s clean energy transition.

“Green Gravity is excited to partner with one of the world’s leading engineering companies in the next stage of our technology commercialisation,” he said. “Our organisations have strongly aligned interests and, by coming together, we can make an important contribution to the rapidly escalating clean energy transition challenge.

“Green Gravity’s energy storage technology represents a breakthrough in the search for economic long-duration storage of renewable energy. By re-using mining assets, costs can be kept low. By using gravity as the fuel, we dispense with consuming the critical water, land, and chemicals which other storage technologies rely on.”

Daniel Todd, GHD’s Market Leader – Energy and Resources, added: “GHD is excited to collaborate with Green Gravity in the development of long-duration energy storage solutions, supporting Australia’s transition to a decarbonised energy system. GHD brings experience across all aspects of Green Gravity’s project development program and is aligned with Green Gravity’s focus on repurposing mining assets as part of the solution.”

First Quantum and AES sign renewable energy deal for Cobre Panama

First Quantum Minerals’ majority-owned Cobre Panama operation has signed a long-term contract with AES Panama for the supply of renewable energy, starting in January 2024.

The agreement establishes that the energy supplied by the electricity generation company to the copper mine will be certified renewable energy from solar, wind and hydroelectric sources.

The CEO of First Quantum Minerals, Tristan Pascall (right), and the President of AES Panama, Miguel Bolinaga, gathered to sign the contract (pictured).

“As a responsible mining company, we recognise our obligation to contribute to the management and mitigation of climate change and part of our contribution is through a transition to clean energy sources in our operations, including Cobre Panamá,” Pascall said.

“The global need to accelerate the transition to the use of cleaner energy will require an increase in the production of minerals and metals, such as copper, used in solar panels, wind farms and electric vehicles. This agreement for the energy transition of our operations is also a logical step to increase the sustainability of our production.”

Miguel Bolinaga, President of AES Panama (left), said: “One of the main goals of AES at a global and local level is to lead the energy transition, which is why for us offering cleaner energy solutions to our clients is a priority.”

The Operations Superintendent of the Panama Copper Power Plant, Boris Batista, said the agreement with AES would cover the plant’s need for more power, and that all this additional power – 64 kW – would come from renewable energy sources.

Other steps would follow in the process of reducing carbon emissions at Cobre Panama. By 2025, 30% of the energy used in Cobre Panama’s operations is expected to come from renewable sources. For its part, the First Quantum Minerals group plans to reduce its carbon emissions in its global operations by 50% by 2030.

Anglo American, EDF Renewables establish regional renewable energy ecosystem in South Africa

Anglo American has joined forces with EDF Renewables to establish a new jointly owned company, Envusa Energy, aimed at developing a regional renewable energy ecosystem (RREE) in South Africa.

In March 2022, the two companies signed a Memorandum of Understanding to explore the ecosystem’s development, designed to meet Anglo American’s operational power requirements in South Africa and support the resilience of the local electricity supply systems and the wider
decarbonisation of energy in the country. The RREE is also expected to catalyse economic activity in South Africa’s renewable energy sector, supporting the country’s broader just energy transition.

As part of the agreement, Envusa Energy is launching a mature pipeline of more than 600 MW of wind and solar projects in South Africa – a major first step towards the development of an ecosystem that is expected to generate 3-5 GW of renewable energy by 2030, Anglo American says. This first phase of Envusa Energy’s renewables projects is expected to be fully funded – including by attracting debt financing that is typical for high quality energy infrastructure projects – and ready for construction to begin in 2023.

Envusa Energy is expected to supply Anglo American with a blend of renewable energy generated on Anglo American’s sites and renewable energy transmitted via the national grid. This energy portfolio approach will aggregate energy from geographically-dispersed renewable generating assets and allocate this energy optimally to meet the load demand for Anglo American’s sites, the company explained.

Nolitha Fakude, Chair of Anglo American’s Management Board in South Africa, said: “I’m delighted to confirm our ground-breaking partnership with EDF Renewables to form Envusa Energy. This is a significant milestone in Anglo American’s global decarbonisation journey and another step forwards for South Africa’s clean energy future. We are making great strides towards our 2040 target of carbon-neutral operations, while contributing to South Africa’s just energy transition through our responsible approach.

“We believe that the energy transition presents a fresh opportunity for South Africa and the rest of the region to build a clean and inclusive energy ecosystem that can create significant new economic opportunities. I am very encouraged by our progress – affirming Anglo American’s commitment to South Africa’s next phase of development towards a low-carbon future.”

Tristan de Drouas, CEO at EDF Renewables in South Africa, said: “We are very pleased to be part of this very innovative venture and look forward to bringing our global expertise in renewable energy infrastructure development, design and delivery to Envusa Energy. This partnership with Anglo American confirms our long-term perspectives in the country: this 600 MW first tranche of projects will be added to the almost 1 GW that EDF Renewables will be building or operating in the country by 2023 – including 420 MW of wind projects in REIPPP Bid Window 5, whose PPAs were signed with Eskom and the DMRE on September 22, 2022.

“Together, these projects further EDF Group’s CAP 2030 strategy, which aims to double our net renewable installed energy capacity worldwide (hydropower included) from 28 GW in 2015 to 60 GW by 2030.”

The roll-out of the RREE will also serve as a clean energy source for the production of green hydrogen for Anglo American’s nuGen™ Zero Emission Haulage Solution (ZEHS) – a planned fleet of hydrogen-powered ultra-class mine haul trucks (the original prototype pictured at Mogalakwena above) – significantly reducing on-site diesel emissions towards a carbon neutral future while also supporting the development of South Africa’s Hydrogen Valley, Anglo American said.

Through the formation of Envusa Energy, Anglo American and EDF Renewables are committed to supporting South Africa’s economic transformation and empowerment goals. The process to identify an appropriate Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) partner for Envusa Energy is expected to begin in the fourth quarter of 2022.

Furthermore, and in line with both companies’ commitment to a just energy transition, Envusa Energy is exploring a range of community partnership models that will enable host communities to share in the benefits created by the development of the RREE, along its value chain, Anglo American said.

Bellevue Gold on its way to achieving ‘holy grail’ with EDL pact

Bellevue Gold Limited says it has taken a pivotal step towards its aspirational goal of becoming Australia’s first ASX-listed gold miner with net-zero emissions by signing an Early Works Agreement with Energy Developments Pty Ltd and locking in long-lead items for its power station, ready for the processing plant commissioning in mid-2023.

The purchasing of the long lead items will see the company continue its carbon mitigation strategy, based off proven technologies with a Tier 1 power supplier, it said.

This agreement is a key step in Bellevue’s strategy to be powered by a forecast average of 80% renewable energy each year using a wind, solar and battery hybrid power solution.

EDL built, owns and operates a similar turnkey power solution at the Agnew gold mine, around 35 km south of the Bellevue gold project.

Bellevue and EDL are currently negotiating a Power Purchase Agreement for the project, which is subject to approval by the boards of both EDL and Bellevue.

Bellevue says its power solution is central to the company’s goal of generating the lowest carbon emissions per ounce of gold produced by any major Australian gold mine, with forecast emissions of between 0.15-0.20 t of CO2e/oz.

“As well as being the lowest emitter on a per ounce basis, the project is forecast to have the lowest total Scope 1 emissions of any major mine in Australia,” it said. “This will give the project the cleanest power supply in Australia based on a greenhouse gas per kilowatt hour basis of power generation.”

By reducing greenhouse gas emissions, with a renewable energy power station and undertaking other sustainable initiatives, Bellevue aims to produce carbon-neutral gold, giving the company a major competitive advantage in global investment markets, it says. This also provides potential for the company to seek a premium for the sale of ‘green gold’, it added.

The power station will prioritise the use of renewable energy and will also include a gas engine configuration, which, it says, will ensure there is sufficient power for the mine, even in the rare absence of solar and wind resources.

EDL will supply trucked LNG to the project to maintain optionality for any future technological innovations in thermal generation alternative fuels. Trucked LNG provides a much cleaner fuel than diesel, which was an important consideration to reduce emissions as far as possible, it said.

At a steady-state production rate of 1 Mt/y, renewable energy is expected to meet up to 80% of the project’s annual electricity needs, taking advantage of the region’s strong solar and wind resources.

Bellevue says it has been modelling the wind speeds and direction with a SODAR unit, which has allowed for the integration of wind turbines to increase the renewable energy penetration rate.

Maximising renewable energy uptake has been a key design consideration for the processing facility. The facility will have the ability to use more power – such as crushing and heating – when increased renewable energy is available, reducing thermal requirements, according to the company.

The planned infrastructure includes an oversized crushing circuit to facilitate a processing rate of more than 1.5 Mt/y (against current throughput rate of 1 Mt/y), allowing the operational flexibility in this area for an optimised match up of the renewable energy demand to the renewable energy resource.

The designed infrastructure will allow Bellevue to have a cost-effective renewable energy supply and optimise the power demand curve to better align with key daytime (solar) and night time (wind) energy peaks and troughs. Through the generation of power from renewable energy sources, it will create the optionality for the crushing circuit to maximise crushing in peak renewable energy generation periods. This will have the potential to offset more than 1 MW in demand on thermal power generation and lead to a direct cost saving and emissions reduction.

Bellevue Managing Director, Steve Parsons, said: “EDL is a leader in hybrid off-grid power stations. Their skills and experience will help ensure we maximise the use of renewable energy at the Bellevue gold project.

“Bellevue is forecasted to be a 200,000 oz a year gold miner with low all-in sustaining costs of A$1,000-A$1,100/oz ($644-$708/oz) powered by circa-80% renewable energy, with a pathway to net-zero emissions as a world-leading company in the race to decarbonise the mining sector.

“Our pre-production carbon mitigation strategy has been strategic and is world leading. It achieves the ‘holy grail’ of lower emissions and a direct cost reduction in power generation.

“The combination of these metrics is expected to will position Bellevue as one of the most sustainable and financially successful Australian gold miners, maximising returns for all stakeholders. It will also underpin the company’s strong appeal to global investors, who demand performance on both financial and ESG measures.”

On the same day as the EDL announcement, the company signed a Native Title Agreement with Tjiwarl (Aboriginal Corporation) RNTBC, being the native title rights and interests holders and traditional owners of the land which hosts the Bellevue gold project.

BHP ties up 100% of Nickel West power requirements with renewables

BHP says it has secured enough renewable energy to cover 100% of the power requirements of three of its major nickel operations in Western Australia, following the signing of a new Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Enel Green Power.

The PPA between BHP and Enel Green Power will underpin construction of stage 1 of the Flat Rocks Wind Farm near the Great Southern town of Kojonup, it said.

Stage 1 is expected to create 120 jobs during construction and up to 10 locally-based roles once operational. Construction is due to begin in July 2022, and first power is expected in October 2023.

The new wind farm will comprise the 18 tallest wind turbines in Western Australia at a tip height of 200 m and is expected to produce 315 GWh/y.

Under the renewable PPA with Enel Green Power, the Flat Rocks Wind Farm will generate the equivalent of 100% of the current power requirements for Nickel West’s Kalgoorlie Nickel Smelter and Kambalda Nickel Concentrator from 2024.

The combined output of the Flat Rocks Wind Farm, through the PPA, and the recently announced Merredin Solar Farm PPA, is enough to cover the current power requirements of all three of Nickel West’s downstream facilities – the Kalgoorlie Nickel Smelter, the Kambalda Nickel Concentrator and the Kwinana Nickel Refinery, which are connected to the South West Interconnected System (SWIS).

Renewable energy from the Flat Rocks Wind Farm is expected to reduce Nickel West’s market based Scope 2 greenhouse gas emissions by just under one third against BHP’s financial year 2020 baseline levels from 2024 based on current forecast demand.

The combined effect from BHP’s agreements for the Flat Rocks Wind Farm, the Merredin Solar Farm and the Northern Goldfields Solar Project is expected to reduce Nickel West’s total market based Scope 2 greenhouse gas emissions by nearly 60% against the 2020 financial year baseline levels from 2024, based on current forecast demand.

The Italian-owned Enel Green Power and Moonies Hill Energy, owned by local landowners, have been working on the co-development of Flat Rocks Wind Farm since 2016. The windfarm covers the Shire of Kojonup and Shire of Broomehill-Tambellup.

The area around Kojonup, which is one of Western Australia’s oldest towns and has a rich local history and large Italian population, is an ideal location due to its strong winds and being situated on the southern part of the SWIS, BHP said.

The Flat Rocks Wind Farm will have a capacity factor of nearly 50%, which is one of the highest in the country, complementing BHP’s use of solar from the Merredin Solar Farm, well positioning Nickel West for a reliable supply of renewable energy over a 24-hour period, it added.

Zenith Energy to roll out 5B Maverick solar system across Australian mine sites

Renewable energy penetration is set to increase on major mine sites in the Goldfields and Pilbara regions of Australia, after Zenith Energy and 5B signed a deployment agreement that could see the 5B Maverick™ system rolled out.

Zenith, one of Australia’s leading independent power producers, and 5B, a clean energy technology provider, signed an Ecosystem Framework Agreement-Deployment, permitting Zenith to be a deployment partner of the 5B Maverick system within Australia.

The 5B Maverick system solar array is prefabricated, allowing rapid deployment while increasing the ability of Zenith to expand renewable assets across existing and future sites, Zenith said. Each 5B Maverick array consists of up to 90 solar panels, mounted on specially designed racks, and optimised for the 540-550 W module class of the utility scale solar industry.

Zenith Managing Director, Hamish Moffat, said the partnership represents the next step in reducing emissions across Zenith’s legacy portfolio.

“We’ve been looking to increase renewable assets across multiple sites for some time; the question has always been around how we can achieve that in such a way that is economically viable,” he said. “The 5B Maverick system is re-deployable, meaning it can be integrated on mines with shorter tenure, and moved at the end of operations at those sites.”

He added: “It offers Zenith greater ability to leverage value from our initial capital expenditure, making it more cost effective to offer expanded renewable energy solutions for our clients.”

5B Co-Founder and CEO, Chris McGrath, said the strategic partnership is an important validation of 5B Maverick’s ability to reduce deployment complexity.

“This has been a major barrier for solar installations on mine sites worldwide,” he said. “The agreement also shows that our cost reduction efforts over the past two years have worked – we’ve hit the price point where 5B Mavericks can be viably packed up and redeployed elsewhere, substantially reducing the risk of stranded assets in mining, agricultural and industrial operations.”

Moffat said Zenith is looking to integrate the 5B Maverick system across three sites initially. These include:

  • Nova: The 5B Maverick will play a major role in Zenith’s industry first ‘engine-off’ project at IGO’s Nova nickel mine, allowing the site to operate on up to nine consecutive hours of renewable energy through the installation of an extra 10 MW of solar, and a 10 MW battery energy storage system;
  • Warrawoona: Zenith recently committed to the supply, installation, and commissioning of a 4 MW DC Solar Farm, using the 5B Maverick, as well as a 3 MW/3 MWh AC battery energy storage system at Warrawoona, owned by Calidus Resources. The hybrid power station configuration will reduce gas use, which in turn results in a reduction in emissions; and
  • King of The Hills: Work is currently underway to install 2 MW of 5B Maverick on the Red 5 site, also supported by a battery energy storage system.

Moffat said the 5B agreement is another key milestone on the company’s journey toward ‘net zero’.

“Our 2035 ‘net zero’ target strikes a balance between ambition and ability to achieve, with the 5B partnership a clear demonstration of our progress and commitment to this goal,” he said.

McGrath said 5B was keen to partner with Zenith, given the independent power producer’s strong reputation and credibility in providing renewable energy solutions to the mining and resources industry.

“We’re keen to develop mutually beneficial partnerships with like-minded companies, and Zenith definitely fits the bill,” he said. “It is great to see Zenith leveraging the ability of the 5B Maverick solar arrays to deploy up to 10 times faster, more safely than single axis tracker and fixed tilt solar systems, to deliver a full solution for their customers.”

Moffat said the partnership offers both Zenith and 5B the opportunity to continue to lead the industry, demonstrating the ability and capacity to effectively integrate renewable energy solutions.

“We have continually said we want to be part of the renewable solution, not just by developing the concepts needed, but by also actively deploying and proving the technology,” he said. “The partnership with 5B allows us to do this and continue to bring our clients on the glide path to ‘net zero’.”

APA Group to deliver solar power to MMG’s Dugald River mine

Stage one of APA Group’s plan to build an 88 MW solar farm in Mount Isa, Queensland, Australia, has got underway with a Final Investment Decision to construct 44 MW of capacity to serve MMG’s Dugald River zinc-lead mine in the state.

The investment of more than A$80 million ($60 million) will see APA Group provide solar power to the mine as part of a 15-year offtake agreement.

APA also entered into a 32-year lease agreement with the Queensland Government to locate the solar farm on a site near APA’s Diamantina Power Station Complex. The first stage of the solar farm is expected to be operational by the March quarter of 2023, while APA says it is in advanced discussions with a number of customers to commit to the development of stage two, reaching 88 MW.

APA CEO and Managing Director, Rob Wheals, said the Mica Creek Solar Farm will deliver lower emissions power underpinned by the reliability of APA’s gas-fired power, while reducing the average cost and emissions of power across Mount Isa.

MMG, meanwhile, said the solar agreement will supply Dugald River with renewable energy to reduce its carbon footprint and provide immediate energy cost savings once operational in early 2023.

“The new agreement further supports MMG’s commitment to supporting the global transition to a low carbon economy with the company’s key products, copper and zinc, playing a critical role in the development of sustainable technologies such as solar panels, wind turbines, electric vehicles and batteries,” it added.