New Study Shows Connection Between Sustainable Mining Practices and Long-Term Profitability

New Study Shows Connection Between Sustainable Mining Practices and Long-Term Profitability

In Dust Control, Environment, Mine & Quarry by Jim Silva

A recent study found that sustainability does more than just benefit the environment — it turns out that lower emissions are tied to lower overhead in the mining industry.

Many tend to think of sustainability and profitability in the mining industry as being at odds with one another, but a recent study from Robeco potentially refutes that popular conception. The report found that mining operations with a lower cost base are more likely to have lower emission levels, suggesting that emissions per production unit might be a reliable performance indicator for these companies.

There’s a clear reason for this correlation. Since operations like deep underground mines have higher energy requirements, they spend more money on power and run their equipment longer, increasing costs and producing more emissions. In contrast, companies with lower energy requirements spend less money on power and run their equipment for shorter periods of time. Less competitive businesses are also more likely to rely on longer haul roads, creating additional expenses and emissions that could be avoided through the implementation of an alternative delivery system like an in-pit conveyor.

The Impact of Recycling

The mining industry as a whole has expressed concerns that metal recycling could jeopardize mined metal prices, but Robeco’s research found that recycling operations have so far had zero net effect on market structure.

While the copper recycling input rate remained stable over the last decade, Robeco determined that global copper demand is predicted to increase by 2% per year moving forward, creating considerable opportunities for today’s metal mining operations. It also noted that other commodities such as iron and gold were particularly resistant to any consistent or growing influx of recycled commodities.

A Commitment to Sustainability

Since our founding in 1975, Midwest Industrial Supply, Inc. has proven time and time again that sustainability pays off. Our suite of patented dust control products are the most environmentally friendly on the market, as each of them is rigorously tested and certified by independent agencies like the U.S. EPA Environmental Verification Program, the Canadian Environmental Verification Program, and the Bureau de normalisation du Québec. With over 40 years of experience in the metal and mineral mining industries, we have the knowledge and expertise to help you custom-develop a reliable, cost-effective, and sustainable program to manage all of your dust control needs. Our Dust-Buster® family of foam dust suppressants, for example, stop material handling dust from occurring during related activities where particles can become airborne. Furthermore, the proper application of our Soil-Sement® technology can transform gravel roads into durable surfaces that resist foul weather and heavy pressure.

Whatever the challenges facing your worksite, Midwest can work with you to develop a dust control program that meets your budget and operational needs, helping you remain sustainable, and therefore profitable for the long-term.



Jim is Midwest’s Business Unit Manager for Global Mining. He is experienced in operations management, asset management, and business improvement.