The lobby group representing Australia’s largest resources companies will commit to “decarbonising” the economy as it stares down pressure from its members to take more action on climate change.
The Minerals Council of Australia, which represents companies including BHP, Rio Tinto and Glencore, will on Monday endorse the Paris Agreement and release an emissions blueprint supporting the use of electric vehicles and renewable energy at mines across the country.
The stronger position on climate change follows a tumultuous period for the organisation, with BHP only late last year reviewing its membership because of the MCA stance on emissions reduction.
MCA chief Tania Constable told The Australian the climate strategy had been sparked by a “change in community expectations” and requirements for resources companies to be “more sustainable”.
The three-year climate action plan will include the use of new technologies on mine sites, the development of emissions-friendly automation, and the rollout of carbon capture, utilisation and storage.
Ms Constable said the plan would allow mining companies to remain competitive at a time when major financial institutions were becoming more reluctant to invest in sectors with high environmental risks.
Minerals Council Chief Tania Constable in Canberra. Picture Gary Ramage