Renewable energy is showing its potential contribution to power generation on mines, with keen interest in South Africa and Australia. The pace of take-up in the two countries, however, has been quite different.
A fivefold increase in mining companies’ global investment in renewable energy from 2018 to 2019 is a clear demonstration of the sector’s enthusiasm for this technology and its benefits. While just 900 megawatts of renewable energy projects were committed by mining companies in 2018, the following year saw 4500 megawatts in projects announced.
Renewable energy sources are being widely embraced in Australia’s mining industry, with both solar and wind farms being established. A predominantly hybrid model has been adopted, with both renewable and non-renewable sources in use. Neither is this trend limited to the majors, with renewable generation being installed across a wide range of operations, including those of juniors. Projects in the pipeline also include hydropower and geothermal power technologies.