Petrochemicals company Shell International and Tokyo-headquartered investment firm Itochu Corporation have agreed to collaborate to accelerate the digitalisation and decarbonisation of Itochu’s mining sites, as well as increase the operational efficiency thereof.
Shell will offer its sectoral expertise in decarbonisation and digitalisation pathways expertise to find solutions that meet the specific needs of Itochu, which manages a metals and minerals portfolio that includes mining sites across the world.
Itochu states that its overarching goal is to promote environmental conservation activities within the mining sector.
Shell will work with Itochu to identify ways for its products, services and other solutions to avoid, reduce or offset the emissions related to Itochu’s mining portfolio.
One key solution will be business-to-business (B2B) marketplace Oren, Shell and computer hardware company IBM’s digital B2B marketplace, which will provide Itochu with digital transformation consultancy, as well as access to a range of digital and technology solutions for the mining sector.
Itochu metal and mineral resources division COO Jun Inomata says the company has recently been recognised for the sixth consecutive year with the SAM Gold Class award from the Standard & Poors Global Sustainability Awards. “We will continue to push to further improve the sustainability of our metals and mining portfolio around the world.”
He adds that Itochu sees digitalisation as being a key opportunity to help the company drive a lower carbon footprint for its mining operations, with Shell’s Oren marketplace and consultancy approach helping accelerate that digital journey.
Shell sectors and decarbonisation executive VP Carlos Maurer says Shell committed to working with companies like Itochu, that are pioneers who embrace the need to collaborate and to act now to lower the carbon intensity of their businesses.
“Digital technologies – that help [enhance] energy efficiency and the effective monitoring of greenhouse gas emissions – are also important levers that can be used now to drive the transition to a lower carbon future.”
Itochu will team up with Oren to pinpoint digitalisation opportunities and appropriate solutions according to a digital transformation roadmap that will be developed by Oren’s mining experts based on the specific insights.
As such, Itochu will work directly with Oren’s sector subject matter experts to conduct digital pilots in key sector markets, like Australia and Brazil, in the second quarter.
Oren CEO Mark Hannan says digitalisation of operational efforts is a vital enabler for the energy transition for mining companies and a critical first step to turn decarbonisation ambitions into action is to build a digital roadmap.