Anglo American sets ambitious goal to halve emissions by 2040
Anglo American has set a target of becoming carbon neutral at its operations by 2040 for Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions with reduced Scope 3 emissions by the same year.
The South African-based mining company released it Climate Change Report 2021 in October in which it details the progress the company is making toward the 2040 goal and noted it had met its 2020 greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction target a year ahead of time.
The company credited its FutureSmart Mining approach to driving sustainability outcomes through technology and digitalization for its progress.
“FutureSmart Mining is central to our plan and our progress, as are the partnerships we are exploring to help catalyze the delivery of renewables infrastructure, for example, in South Africa. Last year, a little more than one third of the electricity Anglo American used globally was drawn from renewable sources. Having now secured 100 percent renewable electricity supply across our operations in Brazil, Chile and Peru, by 2023 we expect to be drawing 56 percent of our grid supply from renewables,” the company said in a statement.
Another major step is to displace diesel usage in its mine truck fleet – accounting for 10-15 percent of Anglo American’s Scope 1 emissions. Anglo American’s 2MW hydrogen fuel-cell and battery hybrid pilot truck is being assembled in South Africa and will generate more power than its diesel predecessor – a zero emission truck capable of carrying a 290 tonne payload – a world first. Once fully tested, the company intends to begin rolling out this technology across its global truck fleet starting in 2024 and this will follow the typical truck refurbishment and replacement cycles. “Our haul trucks contribute up to 80 percent of the diesel emissions at our sites and we therefore expect to be taking the equivalent of more than half a million internal combustion cars off the road by switching our trucks to hydrogen.”
Anglo American has continued to accelerate its decarbonization initiatives and has added an ambition to reduce its Scope 3 emissions by 50 percent, also by 2040.
“While we know that this ambition is challenging, the work we have done in the past two years has helped us to understand more fully our own Scope 3 inventory and the levers that we can pull to influence the reduction of those emissions. This work will inform our development and ongoing refinement of our Scope 3 reduction pathway, while recognizing that our ability to significantly reduce our Scope 3 emissions is dependent both on the steel sector decarbonizing and a supportive global policy environment,” the company wrote.
“We have long understood that our sustainability performance, our financial performance and our ability to deliver attractive returns over the long term are inextricably linked. Our strategic choices position us increasingly to supply many of the metals and minerals that are critical to enabling the technologies society needs to decarbonize energy and transport, but also to cater for the needs of an ever-growing global consumer population,” said Anglo American chief executive Mark Cutifani. “With that responsibility, we recognise that our industry must continue to evolve. Through innovative technologies and practices, we can be more targeted in accessing those metals and minerals, use less water and energy and, crucially, generate fewer GHG emissions. Our FutureSmart Mining™ programme, using technology to transform our safety and sustainability performance, has helped us make significant progress in recent years and we are accelerating our efforts. Building upon our commitment to carbon neutrality across our operations by 2040, we have today set our ambition to reduce our Scope 3 emissions by 50 percent, also by 2040.”