Case studies

Leading mining companies in the race for net zero

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BHP aims to reduce Scope 1 and 2 emissions by at least 30% by 2030 from a 2020 baseline and to achieve net zero for Scope 1 and 2 emissions by 2050. 

The company reduced its total Scope 1 and 2 emissions by 3.9 MtCO2e (24.1% reduction), due primarily to reduced Scope 2 emissions by switching 46% of its purchased power to renewables in 2022. Renewable electricity PPAs for its operated assets have been the primary reason for a reduction of its Scope 2 emissions by 70% since FY2020. 

BHP is part of Komatsu’s GHG Alliance, which aims to develop commercially viable zero-emission haul trucks; working with Fortescue, Anglo American, and Hatch to evaluate ways to use green hydrogen to decarbonize operations and working with Caterpillar to electrify its entire fleet haul trucks at Escondida from H2 2023. With Rio Tinto and Vale, is part of the Charge on Innovation Challenge, which has selected eight ideas to decarbonize mining. 

The company is trialling a fully electric jumbo at its Olympic Dam as well as electric vehicle initiatives at Nickel West and the Broadmeadow mine in Queensland. Working with Wabtec Corporation and Progress Rail on battery electric locomotives. It is working with strategic original equipment manufacturers, such as Caterpillar, Komatsu, ProgressRail, and Wabtec. 

Steelmaking, shipping, and suppliers are the major contributing factors to GHG emissions across BHP’s value chain. 

In steelmaking, BHP is supporting the development of solutions to reduce GHG emission intensity from steelmaking through a mix of research, customer partnerships, and industry advocacy. 

In shipping, BHP is one the largest dry bulk charterers focused on accelerating the adoption of green technologies, partnering to bring new vessel propulsion technologies, and using real-time data analytics to optimize vessel and route selection to improve efficiency. 

BHP has partnered with Pan Pacific Copper (PPC)—a member of JX Nippon Mining & Metals Group, and Norsepower—the leading global provider of auxiliary wind propulsion systems, to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from maritime transportation between BHP’s mines in Chile and PPC’s smelters in Japan. 

In supply chain, BHP engages with its top 500 suppliers by spend to influence them to set their own targets and goals for GHG emissions reduction, aligning with BHP’s long-term target. BHP seeks to enhance its contracting arrangements with suppliers to meet this aim. 

Barrick Gold

Barrick Gold aims to reduce Scope 1 and 2 emissions by at least 30% by 2030 from a 2018 baseline and to achieve net zero by 2050.  

The company is investing in several solar plants and farms, including a 200MW farm to provide electricity to the Nevada Gold Mines JV, as well as convert a coal-fired plant to dual fuel to use natural gas to reduce emissions. It is also aiming to build an 80MW solar plant at Pueblo Viejo and is tripling the solar power capacity at the Loulo mine in Mali with 40MW being added.  

Barrick Gold’s operational emissions reduction of 0.84 MtCO2e over the 2018–2022 period has been enabled by its investments in solar power in the US and Mali, and hydropower stations in DRC to reduce its energy supply from carbon-intensive sources.   

In 2022, 24.6% of its electricity consumption was from renewable sources. The Veladero mine in Argentina completed a $54m power line to connect it to the electricity grid which is expected to reduce emissions at the site by 100,000 tonnes of CO2e each year. 

Total Scope 1 and 2 emissions in 2022 were 6,705 ktCO2e, a 6% reduction compared to 2021, and an 11% reduction against the 2018 baseline. Mobile diesel accounted for 24% of Scope 1 and 2 emissions in 2021, and the company is working on the gradual introduction of electric vehicles at its underground operations starting in the latter half of the decade. 

With Sandvik, Barrick Gold is trialling four Artisan Z50 battery electric haul trucks at Barrick’s Turquoise Ridge underground mine in Nevada for a period of three years. 

Barrick Gold has set both quantitative and qualitative targets focused on high-emission areas in the value chain: 

Goods and suppliers  

  • Quantitative Target: 30% emissions reduction of “Tier 1” suppliers (those suppliers that collectively account for 5% of Barrick’s total spend in this category) by 2030 against a 2022 Scope 3 base year. 
  • Qualitative Target: Incorporate 130 of our largest suppliers by spend into our annual outreach (this includes our Tier 1 suppliers as well as chemical and metal fabricator suppliers) and engagement. 
  • 2025 Target: Collect high-quality data for 50% of Tier 1 and chemical and metal fabricator suppliers through engagement and refine emissions reduction targets by 2025. 

 Fuels and energy  

  • Quantitative Target: 20% reduction against a 2022 Scope 3 base year by 2030. 
  • Qualitative Target: Collaborate towards new technologies to reduce fleet emissions; and engage with host governments where we consume power from national grids for continued renewable energy incorporation. 

 Downstream copper processing  

  • Qualitative Target: Outreach and engagement of all downstream customers and smelters. 
  • 2025 Target: Set emissions reduction target, covering 75% of copper processing, by 2025. 

Anglo American


Targets: Anglo American aims to reduce Scopes 1 and 2 emissions by 30% by 2030 from a 2016 baseline and to become carbon neutral (S1&2) at eight of its sites by 2030 from a 2016 baseline. It plans to achieve net zero for Scope 1 and 2 emissions by 2040 and to reduce Scope 3 emissions by 50% by 2040. 

Progress: Scope 1 and 2 emissions were down to 14.5 MtCO2e in 2021 and then to 13.3 MtCO2e in 2022. There was a 14% reduction in Scope 3 emissions compared with 2020.

Energy use

The company switched to renewables in Chile in 2021 and Brazil and Peru in 2022, so by 2023 all South American operations were powered by 100% renewable electricity. In Southern Africa, it has partnered with EDF Renewables to develop 35GW of clean generation capacity. In Australia, it has an agreement with Stanwell Corporation to supply 100% renewable energy to all Australian operations from 2025. It aims for 60% of electricity to be from renewables by 2025. 

Anglo American is investing in the hydrogen fuel-cell-powered haul truck, the nuGen™ Zero Emission Haulage System, which is designed in partnership with First Mode, with initial trials at Mogalakwena and 57 priority sites by 2030. It plans for the further extension of hydrogen or electric power for mobile fleets between 2030 and 2040.

The first of 10 Ubuntu LNG vessels were christened, delivered, and entered service in 2022, resulting in an estimated 35% reduction in CO2 emissions.  

The company is also developing nature and mineral-based carbon-negative projects, and will roll out ‘FutureSmart Mining’ technologies and more than 90% of the company’s growth capital expenditure is being allocated to projects delivering ‘’future enabling products’’.

GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

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