This Morning in Metals: Rio Tinto, Komatsu collaborate on zero-emission mining haulage solutions

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This morning in metals news: Rio Tinto announced it is working with Komatsu to develop zero-emission mining haulage solutions; meanwhile, Norsk Hydro announced new investments in North America; and, lastly, U.S. steel prices continue to rise, although the pace of gains has slowed somewhat.

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Rio Tinto, Komatsu to team up on zero-emission hauling

Rio Tinto sign

Argus/Adobe Stock

As the world transitions, albeit slowly, to use of more renewable forms of energy, demand for a variety of metals used in those applications has increased.

For example, copper, lithium, nickel and cobalt, among others, are in high demand for use in things like electric vehicle batteries.

However, paradoxically, the polluting process of mining must occur to extract those materials.

So, to mitigate this impact, some mining companies have announced their own emissions pledges and initiatives toward those goals. Earlier this week, Rio Tinto announced a partnership with Komatsu through which they will “fast-track” development and implementation of zero-emission mining haulage solutions.

“Rio Tinto will conduct a pre-production trial of the new equipment at a Rio Tinto site and has the option to purchase some of the first trucks from Komatsu once they are commercially viable,” the miner said.

Hydro invests in North America

Oslo-based Norsk Hydro recently announced a $48.3 million investment in Pennsylvania.

“The company will continue its strategy of asset modernization with the installation of a state-of-the-art 3,000-ton 12” indirect aluminum extrusion press line at its Cressona facility,” Norsk Hydro said. “Not surprisingly, this investment follows closely on the heels of the site’s highly successful 2019 greenfield installation of a 10” extrusion press to serve the automotive and distribution markets.”

Hydro said it expects the press to be operational by late 2023.

US steel prices gain

U.S. steel prices continue to ascend, albeit at a slower rate than earlier parts of the year.

The U.S. cold rolled coil price closed Tuesday at $2,041 per short ton. The price marked a 5.97% increase month over month, according to MetalMiner Insights data. Meanwhile, hot rolled coil closed at $1,825 per short ton, up 5.49% month over month.

Hot dipped galvanized closed at $2,145 per short ton, or up 5.87%.

With volatile steel markets, knowing which strategy to execute and when can make all the difference. See how MetalMiner looks at different market scenarios

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