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BMA signs new clean power deal

18th September 2023

By: Esmarie Iannucci

Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor: Australasia

     

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PERTH (miningweekly.com) – The BHP Mitsubishi Alliance (BMA) has entered into a new renewable power purchase agreement (PPA) with Queensland’s publicly owned energy generator and retailer CleanCo, which is expected to provide half the forecasted electricity demand of BMA’s Central Queensland operations over five years from January 2026.

An agreement between BMA and CleanCo is currently in place to power 50% of BMA’s current Queensland electricity needs with renewables, and the second PPA, which will run to the end of 2030, will effectively extend the existing agreement which runs to the end of 2025.

BHP said that the second PPA will enable BMA to continue to source half of its expected electricity needs from low greenhouse gas (GHG) emission sources such as solar and wind, as well as pumped hydro.

“We are increasing renewable electricity at BMA in line with our decarbonisation commitments to 2030 and beyond, improving the long-term sustainability of our business while at the same time supporting Queensland’s renewable electricity infrastructure build, regional communities and local jobs,” BHP president Australia Geraldine Slattery said.

“We expect demand for Queensland’s higher-quality metallurgical coal to remain strong for many years to come, as major steelmakers look to reduce their emissions intensity while delivering the steel needed to support global population growth and decarbonisation infrastructure.”

The new PPA will help support four renewable electricity projects across regional Queensland, which combined are expected to generate more than 1 500 local jobs during construction: the Dulacca wind farm due for completion in late 2023, the MacIntyre wind farm due for completion in 2025, and the Western Downs green power hub and Kaban wind farm that currently supply electricity to the grid and are expected to reach full commercial operation later this year.

The PPA is also linked to CleanCo’s new renewable energy storage initiative, which directs excess renewables to the Wivenhoe Pumped Storage Hydroelectric Power Station to support an increase in around-the-clock renewable supply and cost management.

“At CleanCo we are committed to providing tailored, clean energy solutions to help our customers decarbonise,” CleanCo CEO Tom Metcalfe said.

“It is our role to develop solutions that meet the unique energy needs of these companies so that they can thrive in a net zero future and I am thrilled BMA has entrusted CleanCo to continue to supply reliable, renewable energy for its operations.”

BHP said this week it is on track to achieve its medium-term target to reduce operational GHG emissions by at least 30% by 2030, from 2020 levels. The miner also has a long-term goal to achieve net zero operational GHG emissions by 2050.

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter

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