Renewable energy is becoming increasingly important in the mining industry, with many companies adopting more sustainable practices to reduce their carbon footprint and improve their bottom line. There are several compelling reasons why renewable energy is good for mining operations, including: decarbonisation, cost savings compared to diesel (carbon-based fuels), predictable cost of energy, and sustainability.
The mining industry is one of the largest direct and indirect emitters of greenhouse gases in the world, making decarbonisation a key priority for companies that want to operate in a more sustainable and responsible way. Renewable energy can play a significant role in reducing scope 1 and 2 emissions, as it allows companies to shift away from fossil fuels and rely on cleaner, more sustainable sources of energy. For example, using wind or solar power to offset self-generation or reduce grid electricity purchases in mines can significantly reduce emissions, while also providing a stable, reliable source of energy when and if coupled with battery energy storage systems (BESS).
“It is essential to promote sustainability in the mining industry. As mining companies extract finite resources from the earth, it is critical that they adopt practices that help to preserve the environment for future generations. Renewable energy is a key part of this, as it allows companies to reduce their reliance on fossil fuels and operate in a more environmentally responsible way. Companies can now demonstrate their commitment to sustainability and help to build trust with stakeholders and the communities in which they operate – while making a good business decision”, Hans Olav Kvalvaag, CEO Release by Scatec.
Renewable energy, especially solar PV, has always been far cheaper than diesel and other fossil fuels, and it is continuing to become still more cost competitive as the technology continues to improve and economies of scale are achieved.
But how is a mining company incentivized to drop their relatively simple diesel generator solution and spend time and money on a non-core-business activity at both development and O&M stages?
The Release model was designed to be the renewable energy equivalent of a flexible diesel generator lease. The O&M for diesel generators is far more complex and expensive than for renewables. The only obstacle for embracing renewables is that they are infamously capex intensive. Release solves that by financing the equipment and shifting capital expenditure (capex) to operational expenditure (opex) through our lease model.
As the industry continues to evolve and companies seek to become more responsible and sustainable, renewable energy will play a critical role in shaping the future of mining. Companies that embrace renewable energy today will be well positioned to compete and succeed in the years ahead.
Release is a flexible leasing agreement of pre-assembled and modular solar PV and battery equipment, securely integrated with your power infrastructure. Release is powered by Scatec, a leading renewable power producer with more than 4.6 GW in operation and under construction on four continents.
Designed to overcome challenges associated with adopting solar power, Release offers customers their own solar plant without the need for large investments or long-term contractual commitments.