The mining industry plays a crucial role in a country’s economy. It helps create job opportunities, grants foreign exchange, and accounts for a large portion of gross domestic product. Below we explore five challenges faced by the mining industry.
Capital access and allocation is one of the biggest problems facing the mining industry. The increase in production cost has significantly impacted profit margins across the globe. Small entities that lack the financial capabilities of major companies face the challenge of raising enough capital to invest in expensive mining practices or large-scale mining equipment. This might lead to high-profile projects being shelved, scrapped, or sent back to the drawing board.
One of the most popular ways of solving capital access issues is flexible financing. You can contact a reliable equipment financing company to help you lease and purchase large-scale mining equipment. This will enable you to expand your business boundaries and increase productivity and profitability.
Mining can be a dangerous job. Your workers are susceptible to workplace hazards that can endanger their health and safety, like hearing loss due to mine noise, dust inhalation, and exposure to harmful chemicals.
Part of improving the safety and health of your workers may involve installing high-quality underground ventilation systems to protect workers from inhaling dangerous fumes.
Resource Scarcity and Quality
With only a few high-quality ore deposits left, miners may have to work harder than before. New deposits can only be found in difficult-to-access and remote areas, leading to increased costs, lead times, and risks associated with developing and operating new mines.
Older mines can be difficult to navigate and often lead to the extraction of lower ore grades and longer transport distances from the mines. As the ore grades go down, production for each ounce goes up significantly.
Large-scale miners produce waste in large volumes during the mining processes, and some can be highly toxic. This waste can lead to groundwater contamination and acid mine drainage.
Be sure to observe and ensure that your waste has been neutralized before being returned to earth. Even as the regulations governing the disposal of mining waste become stricter, elemental analysis is becoming more crucial in achieving little to no release of harmful chemicals.
Shortage in skilled labor, including mining geologists, engineers, and project designers, is one of the main concerns in the mining industry. The majority of the industry’s workforce is made up of senior workers and most experienced workers who have deep industry knowledge are less comfortable adapting to collaborative work and digital innovations.
The younger generation, on the other hand, tends to have a strong understanding of digital technologies but may not have enough knowledge of mechanical-physical operations and may be less compliant with the traditional corporate ladder. The shortage of skilled workers to handle difficult mining jobs adds pressure on existing staff, forcing them to do more with less. The ultimate result is reduced employee productivity and an increased cost of retaining existing talent.