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AMIRA International responds to industry call for energy efficiency benchmark

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AMIRA International Ltd  has launched a new energy efficiency benchmarking project, which aims to develop a ratings system that can be used by any operation globally.

Benchmarking energy efficiency was raised as an important step in the ‘Innovation’ journey during the last Coalition for Eco Efficient Comminution (CEEC) workshop held in June 2012. AMIRA’s Managing Director Joe Cucuzza explained that one of the outcomes of the 2012 CEEC JKTech Workshop was a call for an industry-wide benchmarking program that will enable the normalisation of energy efficiency in each key operational area.

The proposed ratings system will help any operation assess its unique energy efficiency as well as benchmark itself against similar operations.

Escalating energy prices, lower ore grades and higher labour costs are taking a heavy toll on the mining industry, particularly copper and gold producers. Mining and mineral processing are very energy-intensive processes all over the world with energy costs representing a significant component of the total cost of operations.

In the face of challenges such as volatility of commodity price, skilled staff shortages and cost cutting, the mining and milling operations segment has compelling economic and environmental reasons to examine their energy consumption using the best available tools.

Energy benchmarking has been undertaken in various forms over recent years with similar aims in terms of improving overall energy efficiency within the industry through the achievement of best practice.

Companies participating in the AMIRA Energy Efficiency Benchmarking project will benefit from improved capability in mapping current energy usage and quantitatively assessing performance against industry norms; availability of an energy efficiency reporting system for use in benchmarking performance of current operations at both overall and individual process step levels; and having a tool for assessing energy performance of new or modified circuit designs.

CEEC International Ltd, a not-for-profit company funded by sponsorship from the mineral industry, is partnering with AMIRA on the development of an energy efficiency rating system to recognise mining operations with outstanding energy efficiency in their operations.

According to Prof Tim Napier-Munn, founding CEEC Director and former JKMRC Director and JKTech MD, only by establishing a global benchmarking system will companies be able to self-assess their current status, and understand the potential benefits of improved efficiency. He adds that year-on-year efficiency energy improvements will be recognised with AMIRA-CEEC Energy Efficiency Star awards.

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