Australian mining giant Fortescue on Tuesday said it is putting aside US$6.2 billion to wean itself off fossil fuels by the end of the decade, hoping to gain a head start on competitors.
The Perth-headquartered company told investors that a goal of achieving zero emissions on mining iron ore operations by 2030 would come with a hefty price tag, but insisted it still made business sense.
“We must accelerate our transition to the post-fossil fuel era,” said executive chairman Andrew Forrest, promising decarbonisation would lower costs and offer a better return for shareholders in the long term.
The company estimates that it can cut three million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions each year, and save almost a billion dollars on fuel and carbon credits.
The capital investment could be recouped by 2034, the company said.
Fortescue is one of the world’s largest miners of iron ore — the main ingredient for making steel.
Its shares slipped 0.6 percent in Sydney on Tuesday afternoon.