ABB has launched its new global sustainability initiative, showcasing the power of technology and expertise to accelerate sustainability while enhancing productivity.
ABB’s Real Progress campaign is a call to customers, partners, and suppliers, inspiring them to harness technology leadership and the solutions that exist today, so that their own impact is amplified across process industries such as mining, metals, and pulp and paper.
For more than 130 years, ABB has been embedded in industries where emissions are hard to abate and where alternative solutions are either unavailable or difficult to practically implement. Today, ABB is combatting many changes happening in the world, such as rising emissions, water and energy scarcity, and workforce skills challenges. The company is showing that the power of bold ideas and pioneering technologies can overcome these challenges, step by step, together with the wider industrial and societal ecosystem.
The decarbonisation challenge unites the mining, metals, and pulp and paper industries with leadership teams striving to meet increasing market demand with a more rapid increase in energy and resource efficiency to reach their committed sustainability targets such as more carbon-neutral operations. Across these vital process industries, there is a growing recognition that automation, electrification and digitalisation are essential components of their journey towards meeting climate targets set out by businesses, legislation, governments, and international agreements over the next 25 years and beyond.
“The journey toward sustainability isn't a gradual progression; it's a bold transformation. The actions and decisions we take today, together with every innovation we embrace, are powerful steps towards a sustainable future, and we're unapologetically leading the charge,” said Joachim Braun, Division President, ABB Process Industries. “Every day, ABB is working side by side with customers in their mines, their mills, and their plants, to provide complete technology solutions with automation, electrification, and digitalisation to radically reduce emissions and energy use. Together with our great network of partners, we are proud of driving real progress in sustainability, but we know that more can and must be done. We’re part of the journey and commit to making real progress always.”
In the mining industry, Real Progress means helping customers through their energy transition, with electrification combined with technologies for hoisting and grinding. The ABB eMineTM solution is one example, empowering them to convert fossil fuel reliant mines to all-electric. By automating all electrification solutions, customers can now monitor, control, and then reduce their energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions in real time.
This has been achieved with customer Boliden at its Kankberg gold mine in Sweden, where ABB AbilityTM Ventilation Optimizer has been deployed to supply fresh air where and when it is needed in the underground operation. The solution, connected to the ABB AbilityTM System 800xA distributed control system (DCS), returned energy savings of 54% and air heating energy savings of 21% in its first year of use while also improving safety by enabling the faster exhaust of hazardous gases.
In Sweden and Canada, ABB’s eMineTM Trolley System has been in operation at large, opencast mines where diesel trucks are retrofitted to run on electric trolley lines while transporting ore. Copper Mountain Mining Corporation has reported that the automated and electrified solution has resulted in a 90% reduction in carbon emissions for the electrified trucks running on trolley, compared to the diesel-powered trucks, while they can also run at twice the speed.
“Energy transition begins at the earliest stages of mine planning and development in locations with specific layouts, geologies, and power sources,” added Joachim Braun. “To reach net-zero emissions globally by 2050, we will require six times more mineral inputs in 2040. The challenge for the industry lies in having to reduce its emissions while ramping up production of critical minerals to fulfil the needs of modern lives. We know that the technologies exist today to put the industry in a place to succeed in many areas, including Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG). Some of the first capital investments come in the form of large pieces of equipment and associated systems – grinding mills and their drives, transportation such as conveyors and trolley lines, hoisting infrastructure, ventilation systems. Once in place, automation and electrification technologies, combined with digital solutions, are revolutionising mining operations and driving sustainability from pit to port and the world beyond.”
“Sustainability isn't an option; it’s an imperative for every business leader in our rapidly evolving world. To thrive and create a better future, we must embrace sustainability at the core of our operations,” said Rohit Sharma, Global HSE and Sustainability Manager, ABB Process Industries. “It’s not only about being responsible but also about staying competitive and resilient in an ever-changing global landscape. Our commitment to sustainability today will define our success and impact generations to come.”