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Platinum’s role in a low-carbon economy

Platinum’s role in a low-carbon economy
Anglo American's Platinum business installed a 150 Kilowatt hydrogen platinum based fuel cell at the COP 17 conference Anglo American's Platinum business installed a 150 Kilowatt hydrogen platinum based fuel cell at the COP 17 conference

As the role of platinum in making the transition to a low carbon economy becomes ever more prominent, Anglo American has launched a $13.8 million fund to invest in platinum-based technology companies in South Africa. Our partnership with fuel cell company Altergy and the South African government to manufacture and market fuel cell systems locally and in other sub-Saharan countries is just one example where this funding is already having a positive impact.

Platinum-based fuel cells provide a significant economic and environmental development opportunity for the country by facilitating the provision of clean, reliable and cost-effective power. As an inherently low carbon technology, offering high efficiency, versatility and scalability, fuel cells have become a key development area for our Platinum business and the market. This increased focus aims to help accelerate the use of fuel cells in the small and large scale provision of electricity in mobile, stationary and portable applications.

While the basic science of fuel cells is well established, their mass deployment and the global market are still in their infancy. South Africa has a dominant position in the ownership of the natural resources needed for fuel cells and, therefore, it has the opportunity to play a part in their global provision and in providing expertise.

Our Platinum business is conducting risk assessments on applications of these systems in its operations, including in the powering of mining locomotives, back-up mine communications systems and power systems. By supporting the use of fuel cells in its operations, it is providing a source of demand to stimulate the industry.

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