Integrating Clean Energy in Mining Operations: Opportunities, Challenges, and Enabling Approaches

Tsisilile Igogo, Travis Lowder, Jill Engel-Cox, Alexandra Newman, Kwame Awuah-Offei

Research output: NRELTechnical Report


The mining industry is a major source of raw materials for several industries such as manufacturing, transportation, construction, energy, and mining industry itself. It is anticipated that demand for raw materials is going to increase as the population growth and many low-income economies shift to middle-income countries. The increase in mineral demand accompanies by falling mineral ore grade is expected to increase energy demand raising concern of greenhouse gas emission (GHG). Renewable energy can provide mine operators with solutions to several of the challenges they face today, including energy costs, fossil fuel volatility, social license to operate, and meeting environmental, societal, and governance goals. However, the integration of wind, solar, storage, and other renewable technologies face several barriers that are generally not well understood. Many of these barriers will require further research, development, demonstration, and deployment before we see higher levels of renewables adoption in the mining industry. Thus, this report highlights renewable opportunities, barriers, and enabling approaches.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages54
StatePublished - 2020

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/TP-6A50-76156


  • clean energy
  • mining
  • sustainablity


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