Greener, safer mining vehicles coming by 2025

The International Council on Mining & Metals (ICMM) intends to make vehicle collision avoidance technology available to mining companies by 2025.

The ICMM’s Innovation for Cleaner, Safer Vehicles (ICSV) announced at IMARC 2020 that it had “made significant progress” in finding the key to transforming today’s mining vehicles into safer and cleaner equipment.

By introducing electric vehicles boasting features like collision avoidance technology, the ICMM is safeguarding the mines of the future.

Electric vehicles also emit less carbon emissions, which puts the ICMM on track for its goal to introduce greenhouse gas emission-free surface mining vehicles by 2040 and to minimise the impact of diesel exhaust by 2025.

The initiative is led by ICMM chief executive advisory group, with leaders hailing from top mining and original equipment manufacturer (OEM) companies.

One of the leaders onboard is Gold Fields chief executive Nick Holland, who said that there was “critical need” to advance work on safer mining vehicles.

“(This) will have important health and safety benefits and contribute towards the pressing need of decarbonising the mining industry,” Holland said during IMARC.

“It is recognised that there are measures we can implement now but other, more impactful interventions are reliant on technology pathways that are still evolving.

“This will undoubtedly take time but the industry’s collaborations with OEMs, through the ICMM is critical as we look for these long-term sustainable and integrated solutions.”

ICMM chief executive Tom Butler said that partnerships and collaborations such as the ICSV were essential in fuelling long-term sustainable development.

“Progress made on the ICSV initiative has been building the widespread confidence needed to accelerate the level of innovation investment required to scale up commercial solutions,” Butler said.

“The initiative will benefit the entire industry and is open to all OEMs who would like to join.”

Since announcing its ambitions two years ago, the ICSV has welcomed eight new OEMs, bringing the total OEM participants to 19.

ICMM members including BHP, Anglo American, Komatsu and Sandvik plan to focus on integrating their goals into corporate planning processes next year.

This will see mining companies and OEMs allocate internal resources and leverage external resources to continue working towards cleaner and safer vehicles.