Copper world

Efficient and versatile

The unique properties of copper means that the material can play a variety of important roles in helping to achieve our sustainable developments goals. The articles below demonstrate copper's contribution to improving our lives now, and for the future.

  • In September 2015, world leaders adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which includes a set of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

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  • A unique global view of production and trade

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  • Copper has been pushing the boundaries of innovation since the dawn of civilization. Today copper is more relevant than ever as we move toward a low-carbon economy. Copper plays a crucial role in our homes, in our workplaces, in transportation, in infrastructure and in our industries.

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  • Danish firm Arcon-Sunmark has delivered the largest solar thermal plant in North America as a turnkey project to supply power to the Milpillas copper mine belonging to Industrias Peñoles, in the northwestern Mexican state of Sonora.

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  • The mining industry is very conscious of the damage caused by open-pit mining and any associated activities. Efforts are therefore being made to approach such projects with a coordinated and sustainable longer-term vision.

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  • Copper's unique electrical and thermal properties make it the most secure, efficient and durable material for residential and commercial installations.

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  • Copper is at the core of the climate change battle.

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  • Globally, 780 million people do not have access to clean water and with a fast growing global population, this remains one of the most challenging development goals.

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  • Oyu Tolgoi, Rio Tinto’s world class copper and gold mine in Mongolia is committing tens of millions of dollars to the biggest training and education investment that the country has ever seen.

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  • Copper’s applications for use will only increase, and so will the employment opportunities it creates.

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  • The global copper industry has the capacity to help grow local businesses and foster the long-term development of suppliers in host communities.

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  • From temples in ancient Egypt to luxury 21st century apartment buildings, copper has been a building material of choice for centuries.

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  • Copper is a versatile metal that is easily shaped and manipulated. Artists have always noted the appeal of this material.

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  • This video demonstrates copper’s unique role in sustainable development and how the copper industry is committed to positive actions addressing many of mankind’s greatest challenges.

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  • The video "Innovating with copper" demonstrates the role that copper products play in key societal needs such as renewable energy, healthcare, energy efficient transportation and communications.

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  • Despite an ever-increasing demand for copper, there is more of the metal available today than at any other time in history. This, together with the ability to infinitely recycle copper, means that we are extremely unlikely to deplete our copper supply.

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  • Clinical trials prove that Antimicrobial Copper® kills 99.9% of deadly pathogens and when used in intensive care units, copper has reduced hospital infection rates by up to 58%.

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  • Supplying fish for protein to a growing population in a sustainable way and without damaging the precious aquatic environment is a huge challenge. With the world’s ever increasing demand for protein, aquaculture, or fish farming, will play a vital role.

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  • As the world’s population grows, energy consumption is set to increase by an estimated 60% by 2030. Not only will we need to produce more energy but also ensure that this energy is transmitted efficiently.

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  • In searching for copper, mining firms find as many as 19 other important metals that are used in society today. In fact, a large percentage of these metals are discovered purely through copper mining efforts.

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  • Copper mines are typically coal-powered and the burning of fossil fuels creates greenhouse-gas emissions.

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  • Copper is completely recyclable. It can be used again and again without losing any of its properties.

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