Antofagasta’s zero-emission mining truck agreements with Caterpillar and Komatsu


Posted by Paul Moore on September 27, 2022

The group of the world’s leading miners entering into cooperation agreements with major mining truck OEMs on the development and testing of zero-emission models continues to grow. Last month, in an ad discussing ESG requirements for suppliers, copper miner Antofagasta PLC said: “Antofagasta works closely on ESG performance with strategic product suppliers…for example, it has signed a collaboration agreement with Caterpillar and Komatsu on the transition to zero-emission trucks.

“Virtually all of the company’s decarbonization challenges involve working with suppliers,” says Antonio Velasquez, the company’s purchasing manager, highlighting the company’s reliance on suppliers for transport trucks. mining. The company said I AM: “Antofagasta has agreements with Caterpillar and Komatsu regarding collaboration on the development of emission reduction technologies for zero-emission trucks.

The exact nature of the agreements was not disclosed, but Caterpillar’s primary focus is currently its Early Learner program for the introduction of battery-powered mining trucks, with Komatsu focusing on the GHG Alliance, where the partners work directly with the OEM to actively collaborate in product planning. , the development, testing and deployment of the next generation of zero-emission mining equipment and infrastructure, centered on Komatsu’s independent truck that can run on a variety of power sources, including battery power.

To give an idea of ​​how far we’ve come, Caterpillar partners for zero-emission trucks include Freeport McMoRan, Antofagasta, Newmont, BHP, Rio Tinto, Teck Resources and Nouveau Monde Graphite. Komatsu’s partners are Rio Tinto, Antofagasta, BHP, Codelco, Kinross, Freeport McMoRan and Boliden.

The Antofagasta deals are unrelated to the HYDRA consortium, a separate project Antofagasta is involved in, which will see an FCEV powertrain tested on a mining truck at the Centinela operation – already a fixed prototype of the hydrogen-battery hybrid powertrain is tested at the mine site. Other HYDRA partners include ENGIE, Mining3, Mitsui & Co (USA) Inc, Liebherr, Thiess, Reborn Electric Motors, Ballard and Hexagon Purus.

Antofagasta’s climate change strategy commits the company to reducing Scope 1 (direct emissions from own or controlled operations) and Scope 2 (indirect emissions from electricity generation) by 30% by 2025, and to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050.

Its four mining operations – Los Pelambres, Centinela, Antucoya and Zaldivar – have renegotiated their power purchase agreements and by April 2022 they had all transitioned fully to renewable sources, meaning scope 2 emissions have been reduced. largely resolved.

The focus is now on Scope 1 emissions, which are caused primarily by the use of diesel in mine haul trucks, and Scope 3 emissions, which are indirect emissions related to mining activities. company but caused by upstream (suppliers) or downstream processes it performs. not control or own. In 2021, the company carried out an initial calculation of its scope 3 emissions, which it is currently refining, with a view to setting a reduction target for these emissions next year.

On scope 1, in addition to the mentioned agreements with Cat and Komatsu plus HYDRA, it is developing a truck support line in Los Pelambres and for Antucoya has a feasibility study in development on the introduction of a truck fleet to battery, estimate energy consumption and dimensions of charging systems.

The company is also preparing a circular economy strategy for its sourcing area that would address issues such as packaging, pallets and general freight transport logistics, as well as the potential reuse of products like tires and tires. steel, says Velasquez. It is also preparing a sustainable sourcing strategy and a code of conduct for suppliers, containing the minimum standards expected of the companies that supply it with its goods and services.


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