Meeting the energy demands of mining operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo was the key focus at the pre-conference session on the opening day of this year’s DRC Mining Week.
While much of the focus is expected to be around challenges of doing business in the country given the implementation of the new Mining Code, the first day kicked off by addressing another pertinent issue facing the mining industry – ensuring sufficient power supplies to keep operations going. As the transition towards greener energy options and battery storage gains momentum, many delegates were keen to understand just how the country intends to satisfy energy needs in an environmentally sustainable way.
The session began with a panel discussion that provided an update on current energy projects, not just in DRC but throughout the continent. This included a discussion on funding and regional deal structuring solutions to resolve the power shortage for the DRC mining industry. The discussion also touched on extending and strengthening power supplies from Zambia to the DRC. Meanwhile, Francois Grimbert of Aggreko South Africa touched on the subject of how battery storage can make mining more efficient.
Meanwhile, a second panel discussion touch on the pertinent topic of interim energy solutions for the industry. Subjects that were covered include hybrid solutions for the mining industry and how to deal with the lack of infrastructure to facilitate electrical distribution.
Copperbelt’s premier event
Now in its 15th year, more than 3 500 delegates from more than 50 countries are expected to attend the three-day event in the mining hub of Lubumbashi. Among those attending are government officials, respected international mining experts and business people who all have an interest in maximising the potential of mining in the DRC.