Australian miner Fortescue unveils .2 billion carbon plan

Australian miner Fortescue unveils $6.2 billion carbon plan

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) – Australian iron ore miner Fortescue Metals Group announced a $6.2 billion plan Tuesday to eliminate fossil fuels and carbon emissions from its operations by the end of the decade.

The world’s fourth-largest iron ore producer expects to save $818 million a year from 2030 based on current prices of diesel, gas and carbon credits, Fortescue said in a statement to the Australian Securities Exchange.

Most of the spending is planned for 2024-28. It includes an additional 2-to-3 gigawatts of renewable energy generation and battery storage as well as a green mining fleet of trucks and trains.

The goal of “net zero ground emissions” by 2030 — with no fossil fuels and only temporary offsets, if any — would prevent 3 million metric tons (3.3 million US tons) of greenhouse gas emissions carbon dioxide equivalent per year.

Fortescue is a member of the First Movers Coalition, a platform launched last year by the US State Department and the World Economic Forum for companies to leverage their purchasing power and supply chains to foster early markets for innovative clean energy technologies.

Other major companies are stepping up measures to reduce their carbon emissions.

Last week, Samsung Electronics announced that it was transitioning from fossil fuels and aimed to power its global operations entirely with clean electricity by 2050.

Fortescue chairman Andrew Forrest said Fortescue, which is based in Perth, Western Australia, was already benefiting financially from a decarbonisation policy that began two years ago.

The new decarbonisation strategy has “set an example that a post-fossil fuel era makes good commercial sense,” Forrest said in a statement.

“There’s no doubt that the energy landscape has changed dramatically over the last two years and this change has increased since Russia entered Ukraine,” Forrest said.

“In line with Fortescue’s disciplined approach to capital allocation, this investment in renewable energy and decarbonisation is expected to generate attractive economic returns for our shareholders through energy cost savings and a sharp reduction in carbon offset purchases, together with a risk-cost profile lower and improvement. in the integrity of our assets,” Forrest added.

Australia’s new centre-left Labor government has enacted legislation setting a target to reduce the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions by 42% below 2005 levels by the end of the decade.

Under the previous conservative government, Australia was branded a laggard on climate action beyond its target of reducing emissions by 26%-28% by 2030 alone.

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