Copper Mountain Mining hits 2020 sustainability targets
Copper Mountain Mining Company, the Canadian-based copper mining company with operations in Canada and Australia, has achieved its 2020 sustainability targets, having secured an AAA rating for its Aboriginal and Community Outreach, and an AA rating for Safety and Health under the Canadian Mining Association’s Towards Sustainable Mining (TSM) standards.
The external verification was completed by an independent and certified TSM Verification Service Provider for TSM requirements, according to a statement. The company has wholly adopted the TSM standards and already achieved an AA rating for its Tailings Management.
Copper Mountain is targeting at least an A rating on the remaining TSM protocols by the end of 2021. These protocols include: Biodiversity Conservation Management, Crisis Management Planning, Energy Use and GHG Management, Child and Forced Labour Free Certification and Water Stewardship.
“We set a target at the beginning of this year to achieve at least a ‘AA’ rating in these categories and we exceeded our goal,” comments Gil Clausen, Copper Mountain’s president and CEO. “We take our ESG commitments seriously at Copper Mountain, and our progress demonstrates that commitment. Setting and achieving these TSM targets is just one example.”
“Another initiative that is currently underway, is our plan to trial electric trolley assist, which has the potential to replace diesel consumption in our haulage fleet with hydroelectricity, thereby reducing Greenhouse Gas emissions. We are currently partnered with Komatsu/SMS, ABB, the BC government, and BC Hydro to advance this trial,” Clausen says.
“Through hydro electrification and capacity increases, we plan to reduce our carbon intensity by over 50 percent in five to seven years as we aim to be net zero by 2035. So not only will Copper Mountain be producing the metals that drive a green economy we will deliver that value the right way.”
The company adds that it is committed to transparent and continuous discourse on its ESG programs and that will continue to work on its TSM progress and ESG initiatives.
Copper Mountain’s flagship asset is its 75 percent owned Copper Mountain mine located in British Columbia, near the town of Princeton, which produces approximately 90 million pounds of copper equivalent.
The company also has the development-stage Eva Copper project in Queensland, Australia, as well as an extensive 2,100sqkm highly prospective land package in the Mount Isa area.
Copper production from top ten companies to increase by 3.8%
Copper production from the world’s top companies is set to increase by up to 3.8% this year, following a fall of 0.2% in 2020, GlobalData analysis reveals. Last year’s marginal slump saw production drop to 11.76 million tonnes (Mt).
The initial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on mining operations was immense, however, six of the ten largest copper producers succeeded in increasing output last year. In 2021, copper production from the top ten copper companies is expected to bounce back, rising by up to 3.8%, to reach 12.2Mt, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.
The highest increase in copper production was by Canada’s First Quantum, which, despite all the challenges, reported 10.4% growth in 2020. The company’s Sentinel mine in Zambia and Cobre Panama were key contributors to this growth. While the latter remained under care and maintenance between April and August 2020, it delivered record production levels during the subsequent months.
Codelco, the world’s largest producer of the red metal used in electric vehicles, also bucked the trend.
Vinneth Bajaj, Associate Project Manager at GlobalData, commented: “Despite Codelco reporting over 3,400 active cases during July 2020, the company achieved 1.2% growth in its production in 2020. The company implemented a four-phase plan, as part of the COVID-19 measures, to ensure the health and safety of its employees, while also avoiding any significant impact to its copper output.”
Although the overall impact was minimal, declines in production were observed from Glencore (8.2%), Antofagasta (4.7%), BHP (3.9%) and Freeport McMoRan (1.3%). Reduced operational workforces due to COVID-19 measures, lower ore grades and production halts due to maintenance were the key disruptors to output during 2020.
The move towards electric vehicles and clean energy from renewables sources such as solar panels and wind turbines has driven the copper price to all-time highs. Copper has been among the best performers over the last month where metals ranging from aluminum to iron ore have surged to their highest prices in years. The rally is being fueled by stimulus measures, near-zero interest rates and signs that economies are recovering from the global pandemic.