ESG RATINGS FOR MINING COMPANIES SHOW MIXED PROGRESS
The London based media monitoring company, Alva, has just released its 2020 ESG (environment, social and corporate governance) report on the mining sector. Alva assigns ESG scores to individual mining companies to enable investors to rank companies against a range of ESG criteria. The scores are based on publicly available content from social media to non-governmental organisation (NGO) research, as well as on annual reports, media stories, the outcomes of shareholder meetings, data on executives, and investment analytics. Exposure to ESG risk and management metrics are also examined. From this data, a numeric score of a business’ financial risk, as related to specific ESG topics, is drawn. The overall score is intended as a proxy of ESG performance.
Here are the top 5 individual companies for energy management in Alva’s rankings:
- Newcrest Mining
- Gold Fields
- AngloGold Ashanti
An article in Australian Mining summarizing the report attributes Newmont’s ranking to the company’s commitment to a 30 percent greenhouse gas emissions reduction by 2030, an increase from its target of 16.5 percent over five years that is ending this year. Newmont has also topped the overall “Top 20” list in Alva’s report for reaching a water availability agreement with the San Juan de Cedros community in Mexico, where its Peñasquito silver mine is based. Ranking second in the energy management list is Newcrest Mining, which has joined the Coalition for Energy Efficient Comminution to boost energy efficiency across its projects. Third-placed Trafigura earned its ranking with its plans to develop solar, wind and power storage projects over the coming years. Trafigura was a consistent performer, with carbon levy on marine fuels to meet decarbonisation targets helping greenhouse gas emissions climb to second on the overall category ranking.
Among the criteria evaluated in the report, energy management and greenhouse gas emissions showed the greatest positive progress for the mining sector as a whole. Health and safety ranked third, air quality in fourth and biodiversity impacts rounded out the top five categories. On the downside, the report cites negative progress with respect to community relations and human rights. Overall, AM quotes Alva as stating, “The mining sector average falls this quarter, hovering around the neutral point,” but with nine out of eleven material issue areas (health and safety, air quality, biodiversity impacts, water management, business ethics, labour relations, waste and hazardous materials, human rights and community relations) scoring in negative territory. “Companies across the sector are investing in energy management, helping this issue become one of the only positive material issues during the quarter.”
Why is this important? According to Alva, ESG rankings provide an objective, external view of how a business is viewed by wider stakeholders. “The better the score achieved through ESG metrics, the more likely a business is to be able to weather long-term risk, engage in innovation and strategic thinking, and focus on long-term value creation. Investors believe attention paid to environmental, social and governance issues now will help build greater business resilience in the future.”
247SOLAR TESTS EMISSIONS-FREE TURBINE
Innovative heat exchanger eliminates need for combustion
247Solar, along with microturbine supplier Capstone Turbine Corporation, has successfully tested a revolutionary commercial turbine that can generate electricity using hot air at atmospheric pressure, without combustion.
This significant breakthrough is made possible by an ultra-high temperature heat exchanger with technology that has its origins at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). The 247Solar Heat Exchanger™ uses a proprietary nickel-chromium-aluminum-iron alloy engineered for sustained operation at very high temperatures.
This turbine is the heart of the first operational 247Solar Plant™, being built in California. The Plant includes a system that concentrates sunlight to heat ambient-pressure air to 970℃ (1800℉), a high-enough temperature to drive the turbine to produce electricity without burning fuel.
The Plant also includes the 247Solar Thermal Storage System™, which stores sunlight as heat instead of electricity, at a fraction of the cost of batteries. The stored heat powers the turbine up to 20 hours at night and on cloudy days, reducing fuel consumption up to 90% — far more than PV and batteries.
To guarantee electricity 24/7, even when there is no solar-heated air available, the turbine includes an optional combustor. The combustor is external to the turbine and can be engineered to burn most liquid and gaseous fuels, including alternative fuels like hydrogen and biogas.
Engineering development partners include Brayton Energy (Hampton, NH), specialists in high efficiency turbomachinery and gas turbine design, and URSA Energy Solutions (Laguna Niguel, CA). Watch as CEO Bruce Anderson explains further, and contact us to learn more.