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Hidden carbon costs - the true price of mining

Monday, July 24, 2017 - 02:06

A report by climate research group CDP shows mining companies are emitting 30 times more carbon emissions than they indicate, when taking into account what happens when their raw materials are processed. As Kate King reports, under future carbon tax schemes that bill could be as much as $16 billion.

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BROADCAST AND DIGITAL RESTRICTIONS~** Broadcasters: NO ACCESS CHILE Digital: NO ACCESS CHILE It's no secret that mining companies leave a hefty carbon footprint. But according to a report by climate change research group CDP the dirt goes a lot deeper. The world's mining heavyweights haven't been calculating the carbon cost of processing the raw materials - once it leaves their confines. SOUNDBITE (English) SENIOR ANALYST, CDP,TAREK SOLIMAN, SAYING: "emissions that the companies themselves emit when they're extracting commodities from the ground is the tip of that iceberg and the rest of that is what emissions result from use of those commodities elsewhere in the global economy." In fact CDP says its 30 times more than first thought - equivalent to Indian's annual emissions. If it was priced using an estimate of 7 dollars per tonne of CO2 emissions, it would tally 16 billion dollars in costs. When carbon pricing schemes reveal the true extent of the bill. SOUNDBITE (English) SENIOR ANALYST, CDP,TAREK SOLIMAN, SAYING: "We are concerned that investors may not be able to properly quantify the potential ripple effect back up to the miners, where if companies price - and if consumers or the commodities are having to pay for how much they emit - they might rationalize their consumption." Some major commodity-producing economies - like Chile have already introduced pricing schemes. South Africa and Canada will implement theirs in 2018. And China, the world's largest consumer of commodities, is set to announce its plan later this year Any change in habit there, could disrupt markets. SOUNDBITE (English) SENIOR ANALYST, CDP,TAREK SOLIMAN, SAYING: "As climate policies and technology and action ramps up more will start coming out of the woodwork in terms of where the risks lie // and working out where that fits in to the global economy and where companies are exposed which is of course the key question for investors." On the surface mining companies have been making big moves towards reducing their environmental impact. Nine out of the 12 analyzed, have targets to limit their emissions. But CDP says others need to be evaluating where to put their capital, if they want to contribute to a greener world.

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Hidden carbon costs - the true price of mining

Monday, July 24, 2017 - 02:06