The Asia Miner

OCT-DEC 2018

The ASIA Miner - Reporting Important Issues to Mining Companies in the Asia Pacific Region

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the asia miner • volume 15 • issue 4 5 LEADING DEVELOPMENTS expenses. Also, as new and significant deposits become increasingly remote, deep and difficult to access, new innovaঞve approaches are required. Service providers and junior companies appear to be well ahead of the innovaঞon curve when compared to majors. Perhaps this is due to necessity, not being entrenched in long-applied pracঞces or even being driven by lack of capital that is commanded by the majors, that forces smaller junior companies to embrace dexterity and become more adept at leveraging external partnerships for problem solving. It is usually these mining supply and services companies that, as pointed out by Deloie, play a "key role in the diffusion of new technologies, parঞcularly through the proving of pre- commercial technologies". As has been evidenced over the years, clean technologies, for example, o[en reach large mining companies a[er their installaঞon and deployment by engineering, equipment, supply and services companies. Many of these mining suppliers and service providers view themselves as key channels for the diffusion of clean technology in the sector, parঞcularly given the industry's widespread aversion to risk. SOCIAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS Strengthening the business case for innovaঞon, the social and environmental benefits are also significant, from increased safety on mine sites translaঞng into fewer injuries and less downঞme, to reduced environmental footprints and greenhouse gas emissions resulঞng from the adopঞon of new technologies and techniques. With more governments around the world conঞnuing to emphasise innovaঞon as an important conduit for securing a healthy and robust economy, as well as ensuring social progress and environmental sustainability, many resource rich naঞons will demand that the mining sector adopts innovaঞve approaches in support of achieving the governments' development agenda. The internaঞonal community has embarked on the most ambiঞous global development programme ever conceived, with the adopঞon of both the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development – which defines, through 17 goals and 169 targets, the global development agenda for the next 15 years – and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. Achieving both ambiঞons – the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and limiঞng global warming to 2 o C – will require concerted efforts from countries, communiঞes, civil society and the private sector. With mining playing a very important role in the achievement of these two targets, it is safe to say that the sector has been put on noঞce. BARRIERS TO INNOVATION Deloie points out that the sector's innovaঞon track record is quite weak, and barriers are quite significant. With mining being already inherently risky, invesঞng in innovaঞon and its perceived uncertain outcomes are seen by the largely conservaঞve industry as being an addiঞonal risk. According to Deloie, within mining companies there is o[en a focus on short-term, boom line improvements, rather Rio Tinto's Mine of the Future, Pilbara, Western Australia

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