Mining continues to rebound from the last cycle’s downturn, ramping up investment in exploration and project development as demand drivers remain robust. But the industry is changing: concerns over climate change and access to reliable water and power remain critical issues with significant risk to “license to operate.” These challenges are forcing mining operations to be more proactive and innovative with increased focus on sustainability. Miners are seeking to lower costs and build resilience by integrating cleaner energy options such as natural gas and renewables into their power portfolios. 

Advances in desalination, treatment, recycling and reuse are strengthening the conversation around sustainable water management. Meanwhile, new advances in digital technologies and cyber security offer promise in safeguarding health and safety, improving productivity and resilience, decreasing operating and maintenance costs, reducing emissions and improving the bottom line.

To make this vision a reality for our clients, Black & Veatch brings together a worldwide network of expertise in these key areas:

Water Management: Water management is a fundamental consideration for every mining operation. Miners are being proactive throughout the mining life cycle and seeking opportunities to optimize the use of this precious resource, through both traditional and alternative methods. 

Power Generation and Delivery: Mining companies require a safe, secure, cost-effective and reliable source of power to support their production requirements. While most mining operations rely on fossil fuels for power, clean energy is becoming increasingly cost-competitive and offers new promise in terms of reliability and resilience.

Sustainability: Mining companies recognize the critical importance of sustainability in ensuring the mine’s license to operate. Stakeholders, including communities, regulators and shareholders need to work together to unlock and maximize the potential of the mined resource for all. We work with clients to convert their sustainability goals toward unlocking this potential.

Escondida Water Supply Project

Antofagasta, Chile


BHP Billiton chose Black & Veatch as the engineer of record to lead the design, procurement, project controls, resident engineering, pre-commissioning and commissioning for the marine works and desalination components of the Escondida Water Supply project. 

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