Greening our mining and resources sector
Electrifying mining’s heavy vehicles
The CEFC is increasing its focus on decarbonising Australia’s resources sector, with a new investment to electrify mining operations. This investment in battery technology producer 3ME Technology will enable miners to replace diesel engines with cutting-edge battery electric systems, reducing their emissions and supporting safer, more efficient mine operations.
CO2-e annual abatement
In developing the Bladevolt battery system our focus has been on meeting the very high safety and operating demands of heavy vehicles used in Australia’s resources sector. With that challenge solved, and the investment backing of the CEFC, we are ready to scale up production and help the mining industry deliver better performance through lower emissions and improved operator safety.Justin BainCEO, 3ME Technology
The CEFC has invested $5 million in 3ME Technology, an Australian heavy vehicle battery manufacturer designing and producing energy-dense, lithium-ion battery systems to power mining electric vehicles and equipment. The CEFC investment in the Newcastle-based company is part of a $20 million capital raise by 3ME, which also attracted $15 million from the Australian Business Growth Fund.
The innovative 3ME Bladevolt modular battery technology can support the full electrification of a 20-tonne diesel loader. The technology includes remote performance monitoring and control of battery pack cells and advanced safety features. Designed specifically for heavy duty and harsh environments, the technology can be retrofitted into a range of vehicles from small utilities to very large production vehicles.
The decarbonisation of Australia’s resources sector is critical to the clean energy transition, with mining sector operations accounting for as much as seven per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions. In Australia, direct emissions from the oil, gas, mining and metals processing industries, and indirect emissions from the energy powering their operations, contribute more than a quarter of total greenhouse gas emissions.
Efforts to electrify the sector have been hampered by the lack of available equipment, high costs, certification challenges and technology uncertainties. By investing in the 3ME technology, the CEFC will help accelerate the electrification of mining vehicles, providing substantial opportunities for emissions reduction. 3ME is aiming to abate 49,000 CO2-e on average per year, and about 735,000 CO2-e over the lifetime of the assets.
The 3ME systems can be used to retrofit or replace light vehicles, personnel carriers, load haul dump vehicles and integrated tool carriers. With a domestic market of about 7,000 diesel vehicles operating in more than 400 mines across Western Australia, Queensland and New South Wales, there is a significant potential market for the 3ME systems.
A growing interest in clean supply chains means manufacturers are increasingly preferencing low carbon materials from suppliers. Replacing diesel engines with electric technology enables suppliers to reduce the carbon footprint of their mobile and transport equipment.