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Carbon Price, Social Licence, Push Miners to Renewable Energy


Canadian mining firms are turning increasingly to renewable sources to power their operations, Ottawa-based trade blog Energy and Mines reports, responding both to social and financial drivers.

Canadian companies finance some 60% of the world’s foreign-owned private sector mines. Barrick Gold, IAMGOLD, AurCrest Gold, Goldcorp, and TMAC Resources are among the large operators “investing in renewables and/or mine electrification to significantly reduce their carbon exposure, stabilize energy costs, and boost social licence to operate,” Andrew Slavin observes in the post.

Anticipating policy responses in key mining jurisdictions to the climate commitments made last December in Paris—and now expected to enter into force next month—“mining leaders are adopting shadow prices on carbon and introducing carbon risk into their energy plans for global operations,” Slavin reports.

The anticipation of national “carbon pricing in Canada,” added Energy and Mines’ director Adrienne Baker, “is having a major impact on the energy choices of mines. With carbon becoming a commercial liability, mines are evaluating renewables for remote sites and integrating alternative energy into feasibility studies for new operations.”