Barrick ups emissions reduction target to 30% by 2030

The solar power plant at Barrick’s Loulo gold mine in Mali produces 20MW of power. (Image courtesy of Barrick Gold).

Barrick Gold (TSX: ABX) (NYSE: GOLD) held its first-ever virtual presentation to investors on sustainability and reported that in 2020, it had zero high-significance environmental incidents, reached 79% water recycling and reusing by its operations and introduced community development committees at all its active sites.

“At the beginning of last year, we set an emissions reduction target of 10% by 2030 against a 2018 baseline that combined the data from the legacy Barrick and Randgold operations as well as newly acquired assets,” president and chief executive, Mark Bristow, said during the call. “Through the year we worked on identifying further reduction opportunities and this has enabled us to set an updated target of at least 30% by 2030 with an interim reduction target of 15% based on projects already being implemented while maintaining a steady production profile.”

Barrick’s ultimate goal is to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050

According to Bristow, the company’s ultimate goal is to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050, primarily through greenhouse gas reductions and offsets for some hard-to-abate emissions.

In the same presentation, Barrick’s group sustainability executive Grant Beringer said all the company’s sites had been certified to the ISO 14001:2015 environmental management standard. Each site had also been empowered to manage its own environmental issues under the oversight of the group’s strategic leadership, with a particular focus on a rigorous approach to their management of tailings facilities.

“Our tailings and heap leach management standard has been aligned with the recently updated guidelines of the International Council on Mining and Metals, of which Barrick is a member, as well as those of the Mining Association of Canada,” Beringer said. “The standard sets out six levels of inspection and surety for the safe operation of tailings and heap leach facilities.”

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