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Technology and Mining Sustainability

By Mohamed Zaki

We are currently living in the fourth industrial revolution, which is more connectivity related. This progress has impacts in our everyday lives but today is about mining.  

(How technology can boost productivity in small-scale mining” 2020)  

Technology can have a number of impacts on mining operations, including safety and productivity and environmental protection. Safer working conditions through improved underground communication, automation, more sophisticated mineral and metal transportation, and emergency response measures are achieved by integrating technology into mining projects. Technological advancements in mining are also making operations more productive. This can be seen in the use of robotics operating 24 hours a day, real-time monitoring of minerals and metals through mines and processing plants, and using simulations at the mine design stage to test different solutions before implementation (“International Institute for Sustainable Development” 2019).  

This technologies can also be used to make a mine more sustainable through the “Green Technologies”.  

What is green technology?  

Green technology refers to technology that limits or reverses the effects of human activity on the planet. In mining, green technology refers to technology that will reduce carbon emissions in operations and mitigate adverse environmental impacts. It includes the use of minerals and metals that support a transition to low-carbon technologies such as solar panels or wind power (“International Institute for Sustainable Development” 2019).  

 Thanks to the technology evolution, mines are now more efficient, productive, safer and sustainable which benefits the mining industry as well as consumers.  




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