May 17, 2020

[How-to] Effectively Engage in Community Relations

mining industry
community relationships
how to
2 min
[How-to] Effectively Engage in Community Relationships
Maintaining healthy relationships has never been more apparent then in the mining industry. With the majority of operations consisting in foreign lands...

Maintaining healthy relationships has never been more apparent then in the mining industry. With the majority of operations consisting in foreign lands, the need for mining companies to keep continuous rapport with local communities is imperative for success.

A study by the University of Queensland recently concluded the costs associated with protests can result in $20 million a week in delayed production. The author of the report goes on to assert a community conflict has the capability of costing a company $100 million a year.

The cold hard truth is community relationships matter.

To avoid losses, mining companies must find ways to not only engage with local communities but be proactive.

According to the Ontario Mining Association, companies can harvest healthy relationships by having open dialogue to address concerns and questions.

“This approach builds understanding and trust, while helping to identify opportunities for making a positive difference in people’s lives,” the OMA website states. “The key is to improve socio-economic circumstances and stimulate a diversified local economy that will flourish throughout the life of the mine and well beyond.”

Anglo American for example, one of the largest mining companies in the world, has been wildly successful in engaging in communities. The company’s enterprise development programs have supported more than 48,000 SMES, 76,000 jobs and invested more than $100 million into communities in which they work in.

To cultivate relationships, mining companies must work with surrounding areas to provide jobs and enable income creation as well as possibly investing in infrastructure, education, vocational training, health care, cultural programs and environmental initiatives. 

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May 13, 2021

BHP, Rio Tinto & Vale launch Charge On Innovation Challenge

Rio Tinto
Charge On Innovation Challenge
3 min
BHP, Rio Tinto & Vale launch 'Charge On' Innovation Challenge - a competition for tech innovators to reduce truck emissions via electrification

Mining giants BHP, Vale and Rio Tinto have launched the 'Charge On' Innovation Challenge to solve one of the biggest challenges the industry faces today - decarbonising mining operations.

'Charge On' Innovation Challenge

In partnership with Austmine, Australia's leading mining equipment, technology and services industry association, founding patrons BHP, Vale and Rio Tinto have launched the competition to encourage technology innovators to develop new concepts for large-scale haul truck electrification systems. The main goal is cutting emissions from surface mining operations.

“The mining industry needs to be at the forefront of tackling the climate challenge. The Charge On Innovation Challenge is a great example of the current collaborative work being done by the mining industry and mobile equipment manufacturers to decarbonise mining fleets,” the trio said in a media statement.

“In addition to providing a zero-carbon energy source, the conversion of mobile mining equipment to battery-electric can potentially unlock value, as electric motors have fewer moving parts when compared to standard equipment.”

A number of non-traditional mining sector vendors are actively developing technologies that can assist in mine electrification. By submitting a Challenge to the market, the Patrons of Charge On expect to:

  • Demonstrate there is an emerging market for charging solutions in mining
  • Accelerate commercialization of solutions
  • Indicate to suppliers, the mining industry seeks interoperable solutions
  • Maintain multiple actors and competition in the supply chain
  • Integrate innovations from other sectors into the mining sector

"We expect some solutions identified in the Challenge could provide propulsion to existing diesel-electric trucks. This may present a pathway to early implementation for dynamic charging solutions," the trio said.

Charge On

Paris Agreement

Found patrons BHP, Vale and Rio Tinto are pledging their commitment to fighting climate change:

"The mining industry has an important role to reduce emissions and do our part to achieve the Paris Agreement goals to limit the impacts of climate change."

The Charge On Innovation Challenge asks vendors to present interoperable solutions that can safely deliver electricity to large battery-electric off-road haul trucks in a way that maintains or improves current productivity levels. Specifically, mechanisms capable of delivering in the order of 400kWh of electricity to each truck within a haul cycle (ie load, travel, dump, return, queue). The delivered electricity is to charge a battery, and if applicable directly propel the truck.

Austmine CEO Christine Gibbs Stewart commented: “We expect the Challenge will attract companies from a broad range of sectors including mining, automotive, aerospace, agriculture, and defence to deliver selected charging concepts to create a standard product that can interface with all trucks."

More information about the challenge will be released on May 18.


The competition echoes growing efforts being made across the industry to tackle emmissions and promote electrification. In march this year, the Electric Mine Consortium was launched. It's founding members include Gold Fields, Dassualt Systemes and Sandvik who pledged their commitment to decarbonising mining operations.

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