The automation of mining

In recent months, great strides have been made in automation of parts of the mineral chain. Rio Tinto now has two iron ore mines in Australia where all trucks are automated, and controlled from 1,200 km away. They are also on the verge of automating their trains. And at the other end of the world, APM has started its almost completely automated Maasvlakte 2 container terminal at Rotterdam. Again, most of the employees are sitting in a remote location essentially monitoring the equipment.

This is part of a much longer trend reaching its logical conclusion. The mining industry in Goa is planning a move toward 25 ton trucks. The plans for covered conveyor belts or dedicated railway sidings to transport the iron ore will further reduce mining transport employment. We need a plan for retraining and redeploying our mining dependent. We have proposed an interim measure of restoring abandoned mines as well as implementing the NH-17 realigment that was proposed in the draft RP2021. The proposed Citizen’s Dividend from the Goenchi Mati Permanent Fund will also help this transition.