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Mining giant Vale has exceeded its target of reaching 100% renewable energy consumption in its Brazilian, accomplishing this milestone  two years ahead of schedule.

The announcement, highlighted in Vale’s recently released 2023 integrated report, revealed that all electricity used in its Brazilian facilities through 2023 was sourced from renewable sources, such as hydroelectric, wind and solar power plants.

By achieving the target, Vale has effectively neutralised its indirect carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in Brazil, which correspond to Scope 2 emissions.

Despite this success, Vale still faces the ongoing challenge of achieving 100% renewable energy consumption in its global operations by 2030. Currently, this indicator stands at 88.5%.

“We are announcing an important milestone in Vale’s decarbonisation strategy, which aims to reduce its Scope 1 and 2 CO2 emissions (direct and indirect) by 33% by 2030 and to become net-zero by 2050,” explains the director of energy and decarbonisation, Ludmila Nascimento.

The successful realisation of Vale’s goal was propelled by the inauguration of the Sol do Cerrado solar complex in November 2022. Situated in the state of Minas Gerais, the solar complex represented an investment of $590-million by Vale. It is one of the biggest solar energy parks in Latin America, with an installed capacity of 766 MWp. In July 2023, the complex reached its maximum capacity. It has the potential of contributing to around 16% of all the electricity consumed by Vale in Brazil.

The group’s journey towards 100% renewable consumption has been decades in the making, dating back to Vale’s initial acquisition of hydroelectric plants in the 1990s.

Today, Vale is supplied by a renewable energy portfolio of 2.6 GW of installed capacity. There are 14 assets held through direct and indirect participation in consortia and companies (ten hydroelectric plants, three wind farms and Sol do Cerrado). If it were a power generator, Vale would be the fifteen largest in the country.

In its global operations, Vale is also moving towards 100% renewable energy consumption by 2030. The company is investing in joint venture partnerships, renewable generation certificates in contracts and innovation initiatives for better efficiency in the use of batteries.