Minas de Río Tinto, Huelva, Spain
Atalaya Mining-Río Tinto
Thanks to the agreement signed by Enel X and Atalaya Mining, the largest self-consumption photovoltaic plant for a mining company was launched in Spain. The project will guarantee significant savings on energy costs and will contribute to the company’s energy self-sufficiency, while dramatically reducing its environmental impact.
Atalaya Riotinto Minera, a subsidiary of Atalaya Mining, is the operator of the historic Riotinto mine. The mining project incorporates the most advanced technologies in the sector, thanks to huge industrial investments that entailed major environmental improvements and the creation of more than 1,100 direct and indirect jobs.
The agreement’s benefits
coverage of the company’s energy needs
photovoltaic panels installed
tons of CO₂ emissions avoided yearly
Atalaya Mining aims wants/needs to reduce its energy-related costs and increase its power self-sufficiency. The aim is to lower dependence from non-renewable energy sources which are more sensitive to price fluctuations. In fact, electricity consumption represents 70% of the carbon footprint of the mining operations.
Enel X’s project includes the construction of a 50 MW plant, equipped with 75,765 photovoltaic panels over an area of 60 hectares, which can produce sufficient clean energy to cover the annual needs of a city of 14,500 inhabitants. This represents a record solution, not only for Spain but for the world.
The plant will reduce CO₂ emissions by 40,000 tons, equal to the consumption of 20,000 fossil fuel-powered automobiles. Furthermore, it will cover 25% of the company’s energy needs, resulting in power-related cost reduction. In addition to the benefits for the environment, the plant will also have a positive social impact: by remaining active even after the mine’s closure, the project will create jobs and it will guarantee long-term earnings for the region.