Global mining company AngloGold Ashanti plans to build one of the largest renewable projects in Australia’s natural resource sector, the company announced on Monday.

The company’s subsidiary, AngloGold Ashanti Australia, has entered into an agreement with power developer Pacific Energy to construct and operate 62MW of wind and solar generation capacity at the Tropicana gold mine site. Electricity generated will be fed into the power supply for the mine site, which lays 330km east-north-east of Kalgoorlie in Western Australia.

The project, which is due to be completed in early 2025, will be integrated into the existing 54MW gas-fired power station at the mine. The renewable infrastructure will comprise four 6MW wind turbines, each with a hub height of 130m and rotor diameter of 165m, equal to the largest wind turbines in Australia. It will hold an additional 44,100 solar panels with single access tracking to make up a 24MW PV solar plant.

A 14MW battery storage system will underpin the wind and solar renewable energy generation, which together will deliver an expected 50% reduction in overall natural gas consumption. This currently represents the largest off-grid gas-wind-solar with battery storage facility in the Australian resources sector.

Development will take place under a ten-year build-own-operate agreement, with transfer of ownership to AngloGold at the end of the contract. Pacific Energy will construct the hybrid renewables project and continue to operate the combined renewables-gas power station under a ten-year power purchase agreement. The capital cost of constructing the renewables infrastructure will be incorporated into the ongoing power costs charged to the Tropicana JV partners, the company said. The project is designed to reduce emissions while maintaining power costs at current levels.

“We have a responsibility to proactively identify and address current and future climate-related threats,” said AngloGold Ashanti CEO Alberto Calderon.

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“This renewables project at Tropicana is another important step forward for us, not only in realising our overall climate objectives but also improving our overall security of energy supply and significantly reducing the site’s natural gas consumption,” he added.

The Tropicana mine is a large open-pit operation with a growing underground mining component, producing 437,000oz of gold last year. The project is 70% owned and managed by AngloGold Ashanti, with gold producer Regis Resources holding the remaining 30%.

AngloGold Ashanti last year announced a target to cut scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions by 30% by 2030. This will be achieved through a combination of renewable energy projects and initiatives that improve efficiency or use lower-emission power sources, the company said.

The wind and solar project announced today follows a project started last year at the company’s Geita gold mine in Tanzania, which aims to replace diesel generation at the site with grid power sourced with a lower-carbon combination of energy generation including hydropower and natural gas.