Satellite-enabled IoT could improve sustainability

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A study by Viasat Inc has revealed that 86% of mining businesses have plans to increase the use of IoT technology within the next year to more accurately measure and understand the impact of sustainability initiatives.

The study ‘Accelerating sustainable action through IoT’ explored the views of over 200 senior technology and ESG decision-makers within mining firms across Europe, North and South America, Africa, and Asia.

It found that 85% of all contributors think their business is more sustainable compared to industry peers. A further 84% admitted peers are more focused on perception around sustainability rather than tangible metrics and outcomes – because of the lack of visibility of validated data as support.

With mounting concern over green claims across industries, the need for real-time data to cater for regulatory reporting and environmental obligations is vital. Over half of industry leaders surveyed believe their businesses could better measure and understand sustainability performance through better automation and digitalisation of the data capture process to feed into reports.

Many mining enterprises see satellite-enabled IoT (Internet of Things) as a reliable and robust alternative or backup connectivity solution. This provides a major advantage where terrestrial connectivity is limited or non-existent. 

The study also found that many mining businesses have already adopted IoT solutions to enhance operations, while almost half of the respondents (43%) said they have seen the benefits of IoT solutions as CO2 emissions reduce and biodiversity improves.

“Amidst growing pressure to enhance operational sustainability and efficiency – combined with rising global inflation – the ability to track tangible ESG outcomes is a major concern for the mining industry right now,” said Nicholas Prevost, market development manager (APAC) and director of mining at Viasat. 

“The good news is that a significant amount of global mining companies surveyed have already seen a positive impact from their investments in IoT solutions on commercial results. That is an important contributing factor in unlocking the funding these businesses will need to further boost sustainability efforts and deliver profitable growth.”

The research unearthed many examples of businesses using IoT-based operational data and insights to maximise sustainability initiatives and drive operational efficiency. Many respondents, 30%, said they are using this data to engage with local communities on sustainability. Nearly the same number leverage this data to engage with industry peers, and 31% do so with customers.


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