Teck releases climate change outlook report, focus on copper growth

Quebrada Blanca mine in Chile. (Image courtesy of Teck Resources.)

Teck Resources (TSX: TECK.A, TECK.B, NYSE: TECK) on Wednesday released its third TCFD-aligned climate change report, Climate Change Outlook 2021, outlining how the company will continue working to reduce emissions to achieve the goal of being a carbon-neutral operator by 2050.

Teck’s 2021 report outlines three climate-related scenarios looking forward to 2040, helping to identify the range of future risks and opportunities to inform corporate strategy and risk management.

The first scenario highlights Teck’s current focus, copper growth to transition its portfolio to metals; the second, its 10+ years focus on growing its metals business in areas essential to the transition to a low-carbon world and continue to produce steelmaking coal required for the low-carbon transition and reduce carbon; the third, the 20+ years scenario, focuses on becoming a leading metals producer for a low-carbon world.

Teck’s QB2 project in Chile, currently under construction, will double its consolidated copper production when production starts in 2022

In all scenarios, Teck said it sees continued demand for copper, zinc and steelmaking coal — some of the basic building blocks of a low-carbon future.

Copper demand growth is directly tied to decarbonization, driven by growth in low-emissions vehicles, energy storage and transmission, improved energy efficiency and renewable energy generation.

As a copper producer in the Americas with a strong pipeline of projects, Teck said its Quebrada Blanca Phase 2 (QB2) project in Chile, currently under construction, will double its consolidated copper production when production starts in 2022.

“Teck is taking significant steps to address climate change risks because we know all sectors, including mining, need to play an active role in contributing to solving the challenge of climate change,” said Marcia Smith, SVP, Sustainability and External Affairs in the media statement.

“We are working to reduce the carbon footprint of our operations, while at the same time rebalancing our portfolio towards copper, which is an essential metal for low-carbon technology and infrastructure,” Smith said.

Teck said it is committed to reducing operational greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction targets in line with limiting global warming to 1.5°C.

“In 2020, we set an ambitious, long-term goal to become a carbon-neutral operator by 2050, with a shorter-term goal to reduce the carbon intensity of our operations by 33% by 2030,” Teck said. “To realize this vision, we have set an initial roadmap with corresponding 2025 and 2030 goals, including procuring 50% of our electricity demands in Chile from clean energy by 2025 and 100% by 2030.

Last year, Teck switched to 100% renewable power at its Carmen de Andacolla operation and entered into a power purchase agreement to procure over 50% of operational power needs at QB2 from renewable sources.

These initiatives, the company said, will avoid approximately one million tonnes of GHG emissions annually, equivalent to the emissions from about 210,000 passenger vehicles.

The full report is here.

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