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WATCH: CEO of ICCM talks to CNN about mining trucks

End of the road for diesel trucks? Stock image.

Rohitesh Dhawan, president and CEO of the International Council on Mining and Metals, was interviewed on CNN during the COP26 meeting in Glasgow.

The conversation focused on the role of transportation in the industry, and as Chatterley points out in the tweet, certain settings on mining trucks – many capable of carrying hundreds of tonnes of rock – consume as much as 3,000 litres of diesel per day.

There are roughly 28,000 such vehicles in operation around the world today and according to the ICMM, which represents 28 of the globe’s largest mining companies, these machines account for more than 68 million tonnes of carbon emissions per year.

For more on the subject register to watch on-demand a discussion between Dhawan and BMO Capital Markets’ Jonathan Hackett on climate action and sustainable innovation.

In an emailed newsletter, Dhawan shared his takeaways from the conference that wrapped up last week:

Mining and metals have a fundamental role to play. They are the beginning of just about every supply chain and are key to creating the technologies that will enable the transition – including within our own sector. I am grateful to Julia Chatterley of CNN for giving me the opportunity to speak about this important point on her programme last week.

Beyond this, it is clear from the focus at Glasgow that the actions of ICMM members in investing in renewable energy and accelerating innovation to enable mining operations to adopt zero emission surface mining vehicles are addressing some of the most critical of issues. That notwithstanding, COP26 also revealed several areas where we are being called upon to go further. Here are my own key takeaways from COP26:

  • Target setting to align to a 1.5C trajectory is important but how we get there by 2030 is the critical element that countries will be coming back to address at next year’s COP in Egypt. ICMM’s net-zero commitment will be achieved through meaningful short and/or medium-term targets. These will build the pathways that can serve as the template for others in our wider industry that may need it.
  • With a ‘Global Stocktake’ of progress from countries and non-state actors due in 2023, at COP28 in the UAE, and a new standards board (ISSB) set up to ensure robust governance over net-zero claims, the expectations of transparency embedded in our net-zero commitment are even more important.
  • Our aim for setting Scope 3 GHG emissions targets ideally by 2023 shows that our commitment to accelerating action on Scope 3 is both timely and necessary. There’s no getting away from it, addressing Scope 3 will be hard but that’s the very reason why we need to lean in to, rather than opt out of, pursuing collective action in this area. Put simply, collective movement on this issue will invoke a tipping point that helps to create progress at scale. And we are determined to play a leading role in overcoming any barriers in advancing emission reductions across value chains.
  • A key goal going into COP26 was for the world, led by the Global North, to deliver on the promised climate finance and support for developing nations. While progress has been made, supporting those facing the brunt of climate impacts will continue to be a cornerstone of global climate action. Our role in the social and economic development of local communities will remain a key pillar of our contribution to a fair and just transition to a low carbon economy.
  • The deal agreed at COP26 may have its detractors but it’s a lot better than nothing, and credit to Alok Sharma for steering it over the line. While like many of you, I may have personally wished to see something stronger, including on a predictable, long term carbon price, a clear signal has been sent that we must act now to limit global warming to 1.5C. As the first COP to mobilise this level of ambition from business and investors, it’s clear that our industry and value chains have a crucial role in supporting governments, communities and the planet in responding to the effects of climate change, and it is powerful to see so many companies and sectors show their willingness to act in response.