IPWG Update: Overview of Mining and Metals Sector
SAE-A Newsletter - January, IPWG update: Overview of Mining and Metals
by: Kelvin Clissold - General Manager, Professional Development
Mining provides the building blocks for human development. The supply of metal and mineral products has underpinned human endeavour through millennia and will continue to play its role in meeting society’s needs. The need will remain strong, so satisfying demand requires finding and developing new mines, even as resource use becomes more efficient and recycling systems ramp up. Fortunately the geological supply of metals within the Earth remains robust and new technologies will help bring new deposits on stream.
Australia has the world's largest reserves of lead, nickel, uranium and zinc (Australian Trade Commission 2013). The minerals industry contributed at least 10 per cent of the GDP in Australia in 2012-2013 and employs over a quarter of a million Australians (Minerals Council of Australia 2014). The recent mining boom in Australia has created a high level of demand for the development of specialised technologies and systems, many of which have become lucrative enterprises in their own right, both nationally and internationally. Despite this, the narrative around mining is generally not focused on the technology, innovation or intellectual property that drives the industry today.
Mining and Metals subsectors:
1. Coal extraction
2. Minerals and metals extraction
3. Tools, equipment and services*
4. Exploration and Production (E&P)*
5. Ores – Mining and metals
*Indicates that potential employment opportunities exist in the sub sector for automotive engineers transitioning