How are you actively reducing your environmental footprint while integrating more automated mining techniques?
We set a global goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2040, including eight carbon neutral operations by 2030. Therefore, we put innovation at the centre of everything we do through our FutureSmart Mining approach, and we already have several concrete actions underway. This year, all our operations in Chile rely on 100% renewable electricity supply, including Collahuasi. We are also promoting electromobility in our operations and recently implemented a fleet of 17 electric buses to transport our workers. Anglo American also started the pilot of the first photovoltaic plant built on a tailings deposit in the world, with a floating island on the Las Tórtolas deposit. We are developing the world's first green hydrogen mining truck.
We look for ways to develop more modern and intelligent mining techniques to reduce our environmental footprint. The Los Bronces Integrated Remote Operation Center (IROC) is Anglo American's first remote control room. The IROC will allow Los Bronces to operate in real-time and in an integrated manner from Santiago and become the digital operation's brain, where the integration of all digitalization and remote operation technology projects is materialized. It will incorporate artificial intelligence applications, augmented reality, remote operation technology, and other integrated technologies.
With the implementation of the IROC, it will not be necessary to transfer workers to Los Bronces, which means reducing exposure to risk of working at high altitudes and harsh winters. Additionally, this centre will make it possible for a significant number of operators to work remotely, radically improving the workforce’s quality of life.
Another similar initiative is our Digital Twin, which is a virtual simulator that allows us to visualize what is happening at Los Bronces mine in real-time. It uses a portable technology that provides workers with a control centre on their cell phone, tablet or computer. Also, since it reduces the need for the transfer of workers, it is beneficial to reduce the number of workers on-site amid the pandemic.
What are your initiatives to contribute to the local development of the regions in which you operate?
We are taking a purposeful approach and questioning our previous manners of operation to ensure we mine in a conscious and environmentally focused manner. Therefore, we developed a roadmap with concrete actions and goals. With this plan, we seek to continue contributing to the development of the country and neighbouring communities by using less water, reducing our carbon footprint and protecting the glaciers that are near our operations. Within the framework of our sustainable mining plan, we promote a series of initiatives to foster local development and environmental awareness, which have emerged from permanent dialogue with the community. Some powerful examples are our Pioneer Model in education, which seeks to provide students with the tools to become agents of change in their territories and in Chile by helping them develop their talents interactively using new learning methodologies. Today the Pioneer Model is being implemented in 17 establishments, positively impacting the lives of more than 2,000 students and their communities.
Meanwhile, to improve the water supply in areas where we operate, we created the Rural Water Program in alliance with WeTech, which is a system to strengthen Rural Drinking Water Systems (APR) using automation and online monitoring. For example, it implements a software that allows the APR operator to control and automate their system remotely. It has been implemented in 52 APRs in the Metropolitan and Valparaíso regions, benefiting more than 120,000 individuals through savings in energy, a reduction in the breakage of matrices and greater availability of water for human consumption.
To strengthen local capacities, we support and promote the School of Social Leaders, which provides training to representatives of social organizations in negotiation and design and application for competitive funds.
Finally, to promote local economic development, we have several programs. The most important and oldest is Emerge. Through this initiative, we have supported 3,200 businesses in neighbouring communities, which have received essential knowledge, tools and advice that allowed them to improve the administration and management of their businesses and significantly increase their sales.