Use of BEV's in the mining industry - Shermac
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Use of BEV’s in the mining industry


The use of diesel-powered equipment has created long-term challenges for the mining industry.  

The exhaust produced by burning diesel fuel is a complex mixture of gases, vapours, liquid aerosols, and particulate substances. These include hazardous chemicals such as nitrous oxide, nitrogen dioxide, sulphur dioxide and carbon monoxide. Particulates include fine carbon particles to which hazardous chemicals, known as poly aromatic hydrocarbons, can adhere and, because of their small size, when inhaled can penetrate deep into the lungs and increase the risk of heart and lung disease. 

In underground settings, risk mitigation has required the installation of extensive ventilation infrastructure. 

Reducing CO2 emissions 

In addition to health and safety, diesel vehicles account for 30%-50% of greenhouse emissions at a mine site and, as mine operators look to reduce CO2 emissions and mitigate risks to the wellbeing of staff, electrification of equipment in mining operations has been progressively gaining momentum over the last few years and is now firmly on the agenda and the market for BEV’s (battery electric vehicles) is exhibiting strong growth. 

In existing underground mines, the need to overlay an electrical infrastructure with charging/refuelling capabilities over an established ventilation infrastructure might be cost prohibitive, and the business case for widespread adoption of BEV’s in surface mining operations is complex. 

These are challenges that mining companies might struggle to overcome alone, and they demand a collaborative approach from a range of industry participants. 

Innovation for Cleaner, Safer Vehicles 

In 2018, the International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM) in conjunction with some of the world’s largest OEM’s, announced the Innovation for Cleaner, Safer Vehicles (ICSV) initiative. This is a CEO-led collaboration that brings together member companies and OEMs in a non-competing space to accelerate the development of a new generation of mining vehicles, while improving existing technologies. 


The initiative has three main ambitions: 

  • Introduce greenhouse gas emission-free surface mining vehicles by 2040. 
  • Minimise the operational impact of diesel exhaust by 2025. 
  • Make vehicle collision avoidance technology available to mining companies by 2025. 

For each of these ambitions, the initiative has created a Maturity Framework to determine an operation’s current and future desired status, to increase operational readiness to adopt solutions at a faster pace, including the enabling infrastructure, capacity building and clean energy procurement. 

Building confidence for change 

ICMM members represent approximately 30 per cent of the global metals market, with over 650 assets in more than 50 countries, offering a critical mass for change that creates market pull. This significant representation of industry can speak with an aligned voice, on aligned objectives with OEMs and third-party technology providers, sending them strong signals on mining companies’ requirements and on what is needed to accelerate development and adoption of technology across the industry. 


Shermac has been designing and manufacturing engineered-for-purpose service vehicles and water carts for the mining industry for over twenty years. With our OEM partners, we are closely monitoring the ICSV initiative and developments in BEV’s for mining applications and will keep our customers updated with any matters of interest. 

You can talk to our expert team by calling us on 1300 799 943 or email [email protected] with your enquiry. We look forward to hearing from you.  

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Call our team on 1300 799 943 or email [email protected] with your inquiry.

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