Canada’s Copper Mountain Mining Corporation says its new electric trolley-assisted mine haul trucks can travel at twice the speed and at one-tenth the energy cost of their diesel-powered counterparts at its 75%-owned copper mine near Princeton in southern British Columbia. They can also help propel it on its journey to net zero carbon emissions by 2035.
The company says commissioning of the 1km-long trolley line and seven pantograph-equipped electric haul trucks can cut its emissions by “at least 30%”.
“We are proud to be the first openpit mine to commission electric trolley assist haulage in North America,” Copper Mountain CEO Gil Clausen said this week.
“Through electrification and capacity increases, we are targeting to reduce our carbon intensity by 50-to-70% in the next five-to-seven years. We are also actively testing and researching renewable diesel, hydrogen, battery, and fuel-cell technology to power our haulage units to achieve our goal of net-zero carbon emissions by 2035.”
The haul-truck electrification project was delivered in partnership with SMS Equipment, Komatsu, ABB, Clean BC, and BC Hydro. Copper Mountain says diesel fuel is its second or third largest site cost.
“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,” said the company’s executive VP – sustainability, Don Strickland.
Toronto-listed Copper Mountain also owns 100% of the development-stage Eva copper project in Queensland, Australia.