Copper Mountain commissions sustainable trolley assist project

Copper Mountain Mining, along with partners SMS Equipment, Komatsu, ABB, Clean BC and B.C. Hydro, has commissioned a trolley assist project at its namesake mine in southern British Columbia that will help it achieve its carbon intensity reduction goals.

The company, which consists of an approximately one-kilometer-long trolley-assist haul ramp and seven pantograph-equipped electric haul trucks to cut carbon emissions by 30% so it may meet its ultimate goal of new zero by 2035.

Copper Mountain President and CEO Gil Clausen confirmed it is the first open pit operation to commission electric trolley assist haulage in North America.

“We have been assessing numerous innovative technologies that will reduce our carbon load. Through electrification and capacity increases, we are targeting to reduce our carbon intensity by 50% to 70% in the next five to seven years.” 

He added that the company is additionally conducting active testing and researching renewable diesel, hydrogen, battery and fuel-cell technology to power its haulage units.

Don Strickland, EVP – Sustainability for Copper Mountain Mining, added that the diesel fuel for its 240-t haul trucks is its largest source of GHG emissions, and diesel costs are about its second and third largest cost item at the site.  

“With clean hydro-electricity available in BC, the best way to achieve both the GHG and cost reduction objectives was to consider trolley assist technology when acquiring new trucks. Electric powered haul trucks will now travel up our haulage ramps at twice the speed, one-tenth of the energy cost, and near zero GHG emissions,” he said.

Copper Mountain, the miner’s flagship asset near Princeton, is 75% owned. The balance of interest is held by Mitsubishi Materials.

Copper Mountain also has the 100% owned development-stage Eva copper project in Queensland, Australia.

Source: Copper Mountain Mining

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