Mining companies will soon be resorting to renewable energy sources to meet their energy needs as part of processes to reduce burden on the national grid and reduce their cost of operation.
This is according to the CEO of the Ghana Chamber of Mines, Sulemanu Konney.
“Companies are actually considering it seriously before long we are to see the companies taking the commercial decision to actually get some of their power from renewable sources,” Mr. Konney stated.
The Energy Commission has impressed on mining companies to adopt renewable energy and reduce the pressure on the national grid.
The development is to facilitate the processes to meet the country’s energy mix by 2020.
The Commission also plans to begin full implementation of the initiative before the end of the year.
Sulemana Konney tells Citi Business News initial engagements with some mining companies demonstrate their readiness to adopt renewable energy sources on a commercial level.
“The Energy Committee of the Chamber has visited the company producing power from solar energy in the central region. The law talks about some 10 percent of load of mining companies coming from renewable energy and the industry has already started engaging companies in that space,” the Chamber CEO added.
Mining companies hope gold prices will rebound
Meanwhile the mining companies in the country are anticipating that the prices of gold on the international market will pick up towards the end of the year.
The decline in commodity prices on the global market caused government to miss some of the economic targets for the first half of the year, prompting the Finance Minister to seek approval from Parliament to spend 1.8 billion cedis extra for 2016.
The price of an ounce of gold was reported to have increased by about 100 dollars following the UK’s decision to exit the EU in June this year.
This has now put an ounce of the commodity at an estimated 1,350 dollars.
A figure some industry watchers say is woefully inadequate as it costs about 1,000 dollars to produce an ounce of the commodity.
Though Mr. Sulemanu Konney would not readily project the price of the commodity, he tells Citi Business News he is optimistic prices will pick up and reflect in other economic benefits to the state.
“Not too long ago we had Brexit and that actually added about 100 dollars per ounce to the price of gold but how long this will pan out for us in terms of gold prices we are not too sure,”
“But of course my expectation is that the prices will go higher to about 1500 or 1600 dollars per ounce because once that happens, we will have a buoyant economy. This will also result in more employment, more revenue to the state as such it is a very good thing for us to see prices of gold increase.”
2016 Mining Industry awards launched
Meanwhile the Chamber has launched the second edition of the Mining Industry Awards.
The awards scheme was instituted last year to reward deserving stakeholders who have contributed to the growth of the mining sector for the year under review.
Some of the categories to be rewarded include; best media reportage; innovation and environmental sustainability practices, lifetime achievers award, essay competition for students, among others.
This year’s awards is on the theme, “Recognising Excellence in Ghana’s mining industry for sustainable development.”
By: Pius Amihere Eduku/citibusinessnews.com/Ghana