Fortescue’s inaugural Climate Change report outlines progress towards bold net zero emissions target by 2040

Aug 24, 2020

Fortescue Metals Group (Fortescue) today released its inaugural Climate Change Report, together with the annual Sustainability Report, detailing the Company’s progress on its social, safety and environmental performance for the 2020 financial year.  

Acknowledging the growing stakeholder interest in business action on climate change, the report details how Fortescue is preparing for the opportunities and risks associated with climate change and how the Company is contributing to the global transition to a lower carbon future.

Fortescue Chief Executive Officer Elizabeth Gaines said, “The business sector is in a privileged position to take the lead in tackling the challenges associated with climate change. Mining is one of the most innovative industries in the world and we are harnessing this advantage to work towards carbon neutrality, with a sense of urgency. 

“Our bold target to achieve net zero operational emissions by 2040 is underpinned by our proud history of setting stretch targets and is strengthened by the introduction of practical initiatives that will help us deliver on our targets in an economically sustainable manner,” Ms Gaines said.

Highlights of the FY20 Climate Change Report include: 

  • US$800 million investment with our business partners to deliver 25 to 30 per cent of stationary energy requirements from solar power, and 
  • Partnership with ATCO Australia to build and operate Western Australia’s first hydrogen refuelling station

The publication of Fortescue’s fourth Sustainability Report continues to demonstrate the Company’s performance against key commitments, including safety, workplace diversity, Aboriginal development and social investment in communities.

Performance highlights in FY20 include:  

  • Safety – 44 per cent reduction in Total Recordable Injury Frequency Rate over the past five years to a record annual low of 2.4 
  • Economic contribution – total global economic contribution of A$17.2 billion, including A$4.3 billion in tax and royalty payments  
  • Workplace diversity – female employment rate of 19 per cent, with 26 per cent of senior leadership roles held by women  
  • Aboriginal employment – 10 per cent Aboriginal employment rate across Australian operations, and 14 per cent in our Pilbara operations 
  • Social investment – A$6.6 million investment in our communities  
  • Environmental management – zero significant environmental incidents and an investment of A$1.7 million in research and conservation projects 

“In FY20, the COVID-19 pandemic caused unprecedented disruption to our homes and workplaces, and the health, safety and wellbeing of our team members, their families and our communities remained our highest priority during this period,” Ms Gaines said. 

“During this time of critical national need, we recognised the importance of reliably delivering iron ore to maintain jobs and the flow of taxes and royalties to the State and national economies. At the same time, we have maintained our focus on empowering thriving communities including through training, employment and business development opportunities for Aboriginal people.”