AYMA JOINS THE CAMPAIGN #ALIADOSDELOSODS OF THE GLOBAL COMPACT SOANISH NETWORK
On the occasion of the 4th anniversary of the approval of the 2030 Agenda and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), AYMA has joined #aliadosdelosODS to help spread these Objectives of the United Nations, in collaboration with the Spanish Network of the Global Compact, to which the initiative belongs. The goal is to contribute, from its own commitment of actions with the SDGs, and to be a loud voice to make the Agenda become known and acted upon.
On April 20, 2018, AYMA joined the UN Global Compact, the largest worldwide sustainability initiative. Since the approval of Agenda 2030 in 2015, in addition to its promotion of the Ten Principles, it has worked to align its corporate management with SDGs, where it finds new business opportunities, improves relationships with its interest groups and promotes innovation.
AYMA’s commitment in its 2019 CSR strategy has focused on interiorizing the values of its Declaration of Sustainability:
- Sustainable preventative action. In the development of its business activity, AYMA always promotes acting preventatively, transparently and minimizing economic, social and environmental risks.
- Value creation. AYMA considers the spreading of sustainability to be a key factor in client relationships, suppliers, partners and other groups of interest.
- Environment. AYMA includes the environmental variable in decision-making processes and in business operations with the goal of reducing its environmental footprint.
- Commitment to people. AYMA promotes dialogue between employees and/or partners, creating a healthy environment that is free of discrimination and attracts and promotes talent with a long-term vision.
- Innovation. AYMA believes innovation in technology, operations and project design are pillars of competitiveness, as well as the search for sustainable solutions.
Our company’s work on awareness has allowed us to lay the foundation for integrating the SDGs and aligning with Agenda 2030, which will be included in AYMA’s 2020 Action Plan.
The initiative #aliadosdelosODS is a communication campaign coordinated by the Global Compact Spanish Network. Its launching coincides with the fourth anniversary of the approval of Agenda 2030 on the 25th of September, 2015, while the United Nations celebrates a large international event to review the achievements of the past four years and launches new initiatives.
With these types of actions, the Global Compact Spanish Network and its company members also seek to contribute to the country’s goal established by the High Commissioner for Agenda 2030 reporting to the Presidency of the Spanish Government, that all citizens know about the SDGs by the year 2020.
Promoting contribution of companies to sustainable development
Four years ago, the General Assembly of the United Nations approved Agenda 2030 with its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), by a unanimous vote from its 193 participating countries, among which is Spain. “No one will be left behind” is the agreement’s pledge. The SDGs seek to put an end to poverty and hunger, reduce inequality and tackle urgent challenges like climate change.
To achieve such ambitious goals, the Agenda made agreements for the necessary participation from everyone: governments, companies, civil society and citizens from all over the world. Its strength comes from the universal nature of the agreement and from the ambition of its 169 goals. Achieving them requires unprecedented effort on the part of all sectors of society; and companies play a very important role in fulfilling in this objective. Achieving the SDGs requires combining a push from the public sector, from companies, from investors and from civil society.
For the first time, the United Nations recognizes companies as a fundamental agent in pursuing its global Objectives: “Private business activity, investment and innovation are the greatest drivers of productivity, inclusive economic growth and job creation. We encourage all companies to use their innovation and creativity to solve problems related to sustainable development,” said by the international organization itself.
The Global Compact Spanish Network
The UN Global Compact is an international initiative whose mission is to generate an international movement of sustainable companies to create a world we want to live in. Its strength lies in its unequalled ability to unite companies and other players that work to promote sustainable development: governments, civil society and the United Nations. With more than 12,500 member entities in more than 160 countries, it is the largest corporate social responsibility initiative in the world. Moreover, it has a mandate from the UN to promote Sustainable Development Goals in the private sector.
The UN Global Compact has been operating in Spain through the Spanish Network since 2004. It is the local network with the most signatory participants and is positioned at the top of different UN Global Compact networks on a global level. It currently has 1,542 member entities, 669 of which are partners.
CLEAN ENERGY TRANSITION IN CONSTRUCTION
Since the beginning of their existence, humans have always sought to harness natural resources. To do so, for centuries, they created technologies to help them make use of these resources. Clean energy transition refers to the shift towards a sustainable economy centered on the use of renewable energy, energy efficiency and sustainable development. Transportation and construction are the two main causes of energy consumption in the world. What can be done to change this?
To give us an idea, seventy percent of the world’s carbon emissions are produced by cities. Buildings are responsible for thirty percent of overall energy consumption and twenty-eight percent of CO2 emissions.
Because of this, clean energy transition for construction is not a choice. It’s an obligation.
«The construction sector is now at a time when many laws and regulations will considerably influence the future, mainly due to our country’s commitment to achieve a low-carbon economy», assures the president of ATECYR, Miguel Ángel Llopis.
Legislation on clean energy transition
Currently, updates are being made to CTE DB HE and RITE, Energy Certification of Buildings, Safety of Refrigerator Installations, implementations of Energy Efficiency Directives, which will mean auditing and implementing energy management systems, Energy Efficiency in Buildings Directive, which will mean knowing the energy efficiency of a building and its level of intelligence, and the Renewable Energy Directive, which will incorporate renewable energies into the data for heating and refrigeration systems.
Let’s remember that there are three main objectives for climate and energy in Europe for 2030:
- at least 40 % reduction of greenhouse gases (compared to 1990)
- at least 27 % share of renewable energy
- at least 27 % improvement in energy efficiency
Reduction of energy demand in buildings
The reduction of energy demand in buildings is the most effective strategy for reducing energy consumption and CO2 emissions. «At the moment, we have efficient solutions that allow us to construct new buildings with nearly zero energy consumption parameters and can even modernize existing ones to reduce energy consumption between 50 and 90 percent. No other sector has the capacity to make this change towards a model that is sustainable and respectful towards the environment through existing and proven technology», explains Pedro Luis Fernández-Cano, Business Unit Director of ROCKWOOL Peninsular, at Profesionales Hoy.
Approximately ninety-seven percent of the European Union’s housing stock –more than thirty billion square meters– is considered insufficient from an energy perspective. «The rehabilitation of 350,000 homes per year until 2050 is necessary to achieve the environmental objectives that Spain is required to reach. This is an intervention that must be taken on ambitiously and profoundly, adapting buildings so they consume nearly zero energy, with the priority of improving thermal enclosure and incorporating power generation from renewable sources », affirms Albert Grau, Public Affairs Officer of ROCKWOOL Peninsular.
Nearly Zero Energy Building (nZEB)
It is important to note that the new planning and building regulations not only consider the characteristics of the buildings but also their energy efficiency conditions. Specifically, they’re looking for what is known as Nearly Zero Energy Buildings (nZEB). Buildings that manage energy and integrate self-sufficiency and renewable energyin calculating energy efficiency, the installation of charging points for electric cars and intelligent applications to actively manage energy demand.
The nZEB building is that which does not go over the established limit for primary energy consumption. This limit is fixed according to the climate zone and the use of the building, according to Development. Primary energy refers to the amount of energy that is used from the time it is taken from nature until it is used in the building.
AYMA is a signatory to the Global Compact, a UN initiative for sustainability in the private sector. If you need advisory services regarding energy transition, our specialists can help you.
CSR, A FORM OF COMMUNICATION
The implementation of CSR policies in companies and commitment to the environment significantly improve client relations and brand image.
It is evident that society has changed in the last few years. The population’s increasing awareness of environmental, social and sustainability issues has brought companies to adopt these values within their business strategies. There has also been an increase in decision-making regarding social and sustainability issues due to the implementation of CSR into companies’business models.
Best practices in CSR mean integrating environmental and social aspects into the very corporate culture of the company, converting them into their own values and transmitting them to all those who interact with the companies: consumers, clients, society, workers, investors, shareholders, etc.
Particularly, consumer demand for these practices is growing, pushing companies to be sustainable. In addition to earning money, consumers want companies to generate wealth and well-being for their environment. Some companies have fully adopted these practices, and in addition to serving the common good, they have achieved better results as a company.
It can be said that CSR is a way of communication, or a strategy to interact with those who are a part of taking these actions. It is just as important for the companies to provide this service as it is for consumers to recognize its importance. These are the two key aspects for CSR to achieve its objective and means that the private sectormust participate in the solution to global problems.
But for CSR to add value to a company, it must be clear how it should be implemented and how the strategies should be followed. At AYMA we are experts on this subject. That is why we are with our clients every step of the way in the path towards balance between socially, environmental and economically responsible. OurSAER Seal is proof of that. We know that CSR is one of the tools in a company’s strategic management, and we help companies adjust those habits that are not yet adapted to these criteria and to reevaluate them.
TRENDS IN CONSTRUCTION: BUILDINGS OF THE FUTURE
If anything shows the history and evolution of civilizations, it would undoubtedly bearchitecture:buildings, monuments and houses and the materials and techniques used to construct them. Buildings change with the passing of time. Comfort for the citizens that use them has been what determines these changes. However, for some time now, other factors have intervened, such as sustainability and respect for the environment.
During the past few years, advances in construction and usabilityhave been implemented in avant-garde cities like Dubai, where an office building was constructed in just two weeks with 3D printing technology, which is gradually making its way to the rest of the world. We look forward to embracing new trends in building that await us in the future.
This aspect is probably the main challenge in construction. Nowadays, contamination, climate change, etc. are the main problems on a global level, and any company that makes changes to landscapes is responsible for taking these problems into account. Saving energy, recycling and durability of materials, and regulation and development of renewable energies using solar panels, wind power generators, biogas or purification and re-use of water are all on the list of things to doin construction.
During the past few months, this innovative building system has been the choice for various construction companies. Steel framingis a building technique that creates a structure of cold-rolled galvanized steel sheets that make up the skeleton frame of the building. In addition to giving the building a strong infrastructure, steel is a material with environmental benefits due to its low corrosion and high durability, and it is easy to recycle.
As in the case of Dubai mentioned above, 3D printing is poised to revolutionize the construction industry. Although some aspects still may need some work, especially in the quality of the final result, there are already projects that opt for futuristic construction. Advantages of 3D printing include facilitating the construction of models with higher precision, integrating sustainable materials like bioplastics, and reducing the need for human labor.
Passive systems allow for efficiency in energy consumption by maximizing the use of the building’s surrounding natural sources. It is a kind of architectural Aikido in construction that uses techniques, such as optimal orientation to let in natural light for as many hours as possible during the day, working with site landforms for a better distribution of space, or using natural ventilation systems, and many other techniques.
The main advantage of modular structures is to be able to build on practically any surface. Build the unbuildable. As these buildings are assembled through prefabricated cubicles or modules, they can be set up on almost any surface, at a low cost and in very little time. The modules can be put together like puzzle pieces. Although they have only been used in small projects until now, these techniques are already being considered for more ambitious plans, such as a football staduim for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
In addition to techniques directly related to construction, buildings of the future integrate other aspects like automation or Internet for everyone. Innovation is inherent in construction, and even if we don’t know exactly what is yet to come, we can be sure that any novelty must look to create a more habitable planet, both indoors and out, but more importantly, outdoors.
DECEMBER 4, INTERNATIONAL MINING DAY
As such an important profession that has traditionally been associated with risk and sacrifice,mining has to have a day of recognition. This day is December 4, and it was not handpicked like Valentine’s Day or National Empanada Day.
It is on that day for a reason.
December 4 is the Saints’ day of Saint Barbara. It tells the story of Barbara, the daughter of Dioscoro, a religious man with closed-minded beliefs who rejected the human nature of Jesus Christ. Before becoming a saint, she converted to Christianity to rebel against her father. To stop her from doing so, it is said that Dioscoro locked her in a tower from which she finally managed to escape, only to die by the hand of her father who caught her in the act and beheaded her. At that same moment, Dioscoro was struck by a lightning bolt.
It is that lightning strike that connects the history of Saint Barbara to the use of explosives in mining, and it is the reason why miners invoke Saint Barbara before using gunpowder.
The lightning bold at the top of a mountain was like a divine act of vengeance that today serves to protect miners from harm during the use of explosives.
Speaking of mining, the use of explosives, and a history starring Saint Barbara, at AYMA Mining Solutions we can’t miss this opportunity to wish a happy saint’s day to our director, Barbara Gomez Delgado, who has extensive and reputable experience in permits, supply and supervision management, use and storage of explosives in the film industry. At AYMA, we are fully protected without a doubt.
BIM TECHNOLOGY MAKES ITS WAY TO MINING CONSTRUCTION AND FACILITIES
BIM technology, Building Information Modeling, has been used in the construction sector during the past few years and has resulted in many improvements, especially in SMEs. Although this method has seen most of its growth in construction, the similarities among the field of engineering in building and mining operations have allowed BIM technology to expand to this sector, where more and more practical applications are being found.
But what is BIM exactly? It refers to the modeling of information for construction. In other words, BIM is the process of generating and managing data during the construction of a building using dynamic building modeling software in 3D and in real time. If we apply it to mining, we see that in both types of operations, BIM technology provides complete information and constant updates about the building or excavation, along with attention to geometric parameters, spatial relations and geographic information. In addition, it provides precise data about the quantities and characteristics of components.
Now that we have explained what BIM technology is, let’s talk about its advantages for clients of AYMA Mining Solutions since we have integrated this technology into our company:
- Multidisciplinary workflow. BIM allows for collaboration through one single platform so that different professionals –engineers, consultants, architects, etc – can share information and perform actions.
- 2D and 3D technology. This improves the vision of the overall project and helps to avoid potential errors.
- Documentation of the project –budgets, plans, etc..– are generated automatically, which increases productivity and saves money.
- BIM also lets us know the energetic impact of the materials used in construction.
Using BIM technology implies necessary changes in a company that uses it, and it requires having the necessary conditions for its implementation beforehand, especially in the area of human resources. At AYMA Mining Solutions, we have qualified technicians both in production as well as initial phases –3D scan, thermography, digital photogrammetry, drones, modeling of landscapes and existing buildings, etc.– and post-construction phases, during operation and maintenance of the building, to complete each project.
WOMEN IN MINING: KILL THE SUPERWOMAN
Currently,gender equality is one of the most important battles in practically all social environments: work, school, education…even children‘s toys and the use of language. A much-needed demand for equal rights and treatment between women and men has reached the mining world and was the topic of the recent seminar,Women, mining and industry, held on November 7, 2018. During the seminar –organized by the Canadian Embassy in Spain and the Regional Government of Andalusia– the director of AYMA Mining, Bárbara Gómez Delgado, was an active participant, especially in the panel discussion Conciliation and its impact on promotions in mining.
The paneldiscussed topics regarding the presence of women in mining and consulting companies: the positions they hold compared to men, ways of promoting their careers, etc. The other speakers were representatives from other companies that are either operating a mine or are in the planning process: Marie-Christine Frenette, vice president of Africa – Kinross Gold Corporation, Susana Bieberach, marketing and communications manager at Geoalcali S.L, and Guadalupe Collar, director of Geology at Oro Valle. The discussion was moderated by Brita Hektoen, director of Chair on Women‘s Rights at the International Institute of San Telmo, the location of the event.
With respect to the general situation regarding managing or technical positions, Bárbara concluded that despite the fact that there has been “a positive change for women”, their presence in consulting/engineering/mining companies “is highly monitored by steering committees, unless the companies were created by women”, which are usually not more than 40 percent. According to the director of AYMA, other alternatives in hiring processes can help achieve real equal opportunities, for example, by leaving out names or any reference to the candidate’s gender in blind CVs, or by continuing of other initiatives such as “vivida” at San Telmo Institute, where women can learn from other women and see how far they can advance.
Another topic discussed was about a survey that showed a generalized opinion: the acceptance of the presence of women as a minority in these types of positions was related to a lack of ambition and number of women candidates. Bárbara Gómez Delgado sees here that there is a problem and a radical solution. The problem, the superwoman. The solution, kill the superwoman. The explanation is that we live in a society that educates us to relegate women to household activities. The idea is the following: you can do anything you want and in addition, run a household. The superwoman.
For Bárbara it is crucial to end this idea that women can do it all. They should be able to opt for only one goal if they want. Without having to divide their efforts. To be able to choose. Kill the superwoman.
In an intervention in the previous panel discussion, Marta Pérez Dorao, president of the Inspiring Girls Foundation, made an interesting reflection about guilt, something that Bárbara had previously mentioned. The affirmation we must kill the superwoman means understanding that we should not have to feel guilty.
Although in general the consideration of women in the world of mining engineering has improved, it is necessary to continue fighting to continue in this direction. “The sad thing is that women are still having to give explanations”, says Bárbara, “for achieving goals that men are assumed to achieve.”
THE PRESENT AND FUTURE OF CIVIL WORKS: TO BUILD OR NOT TO BUILD
Infrastructures are just as much subject to change as the society that uses them. It has been this way since human beings came into existence. Cities were built along the coasts or near rivers because it was practical, and through the centuries, their infrastructures have been modified for the needs of tourism and leisure.
Times change, and so do cities.
Civil works is responsible for adapting cities to these changes. Traditionally, it is the branch of engineering responsible for the construction of bridges, highways, parks, buildings, train tracks, ports, etc. In other words, it designs and modifies the environment to benefit the management of a territory and to improve quality of life for the community that lives there.
If we take a look at the evolution over the last few years in the Spanish sector, we find a period of high emigration of engineers abroad in search of construction projects, but this tendency is now coming to a stop. The reasons for this don‘t have so much to do with whether or not there are enough construction projects (the main activities related to civil works that we mentioned before), but with versatility and new alternatives that the profession is acquiring and that there are new options for the future for engineers. A great example is Bernardo Gómez Delgado, director of the Madrid headquarters of AYMA Mining Solutions, who has lead important civil works projects and currently does both that and consulting, which is non-traditional.
It may be that Spain is not yet considering the construction of a bridge like the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao, the world‘s longest bridge that connects Hong Kong to Continental China; however, we are not Chinese and flights to the Canary Islands are still working just fine. In an age where changes in population and transportation and housing are occurring faster than ever, civil works must fulfill its role. The ability to take on any challenge, not just those directly related to engineering, but also a high capacity for project management will be reinforced in the education of new generations in technical colleges and universities.
In closing, we‘ll mention another example of reinvention in the sector. The article, I am an architect and I don‘t build: Welcome to the future of urban planning (Arquia Foundation), explains the need for a form of social civil works that improves the usability of large cities with respect to the needs of citizens, without spectacular architecture. It talks about a future where consultants act as “social agents” who are responsible for improving the quality of life for cities and their citizens, making sure everyone benefits from strategies, and also creating social and economic opportunities. Urban planning of the future is about new professionals who don‘t necessarily need to build”.
DILUTION, AN UNPREDICTABLE FACTOR
In the mining sector, dilution is defined as “all external material with grades lower than the cut-off grade that is inevitably mined with the extracted mineral.” In other words, it is the amount of waste material or below cut-off grade material that is mixed with the mineral during the stages of mining.
Dilution poses a major challenge in the fundamental steps of a mining project: planning. Even though many factors are predictable and are quantified and analyzed for planning before beginning the mining process, we are still inevitably faced with uncertainties only resolved after doing the job. Among them is the case we currently have at hand.
Despite the uncertainties, a rough estimate of waste material in the extracted mineral is necessary. According to the articleby Adén Muñoz, mining supervisor of AYMA Mining Solutions, and Benjamín Cebrián, of Blast-Consult, “it is our responsibility to design, control and to measure the dilution that results in what we do and how we operate”. In other words, the dilution present in minerals is a determining factor for mining operations and extracting processes.
On the other hand, there are various types of dilution that require different design and control processes. According to the abovementioned article, geological dilution“is produced by inaccuracies in the delineation stages of the resource model –waste contact– mineral, mineral transitions, etc. Geological dilution could comprise up to a third of total dilution”. Internal dilution“cannot be separated due to its size and can occur in situations where the mining method dictates a minimum width of extraction –in this sense, internal dilution can be planned; either in relation to the size of the block of the model –internal dilution to the block”. Lastly, external dilution “is unplanned and refers to waste material outside the mineral that is mined with the mining block. External dilution can be caused by production errors or from the falling of materials due to planar instabilities or contamination from backfill”.
Dilution, however, beyond the three general categories, is subdivided in more variants that depend on factors like the type of mineral, whether the mine is underground or open-pit, etc., all of which need different measuring, planning and calculating according to the elements that intervene. Apart from the inherent dynamism of dilution, the people in the team, their experience and extraction processes make it possible for each case to have its own equation. One-of-a-kind. Like that small percentage of difference in DNA that makes each person unique.
THE REBIRTH OF MINING IN LATIN AMERICA
After the fall in the price of copper in 2014, mining in Latin American countries went through a rough couple of years with very few hopes for the future. From that year until the beginning of 2017, the falling of prices was constant, especially for copper. Moreover, the few changes that did occur during this time were all going from bad to worse.
However, an international political and economical change in February of 2017 brought a glimpse of hope for the future. These prospects have been alive for over a year and are now a reality. The increase in the demand for raw materials during that year caused prices to increase. The major producers, iron ore in Brazil and copper in Chile, have been responsible for the economic upturn in the region. Peru has also played an important role in the growth of economic activity.
Chile. In 2015, the Chilean Copper Commission (Cochilco) estimated a series of mining projects valued at 105,000 million dollars until 2023, $80,000 of which corresponded to mining development and copper-related production. Chile’s objective is to go from the 6 million tons of copper produced in 2015 to 8.5 million tons by 2025.
This South American country has various mining projects and strong investments to achieve this objective, although it has faced some obstacles, such as a rise in the cost of resources, especially in the energy sector.
Brazil. Brazil is the largest producer of iron ore and has the largest iron ore mines in the world, which places it as one of the giants in this market, and the aim is to continue growing to convert iron ore into one of its greatest economic resources. The country has over 40,000 million dollars in projects. The Carajás S11D mine in Vale, one of the most important projects since its beginning four years ago with an investment of 19,670 million, was aimed at producing 90 million tons annually when it reached its maximum output in 2018. This objective was achieved a year before expected.
Peru. Peru is earning its place among the biggest mining producers thanks to its diversity of metals extracted, the main element among which is copper. Since 2016, it has kept production at 2.8 million tons, after a major growth from 2013 until that year. Among its most significant projects are Las Bambas, Conga, and Cerro Verde.
These countries are the three leaders in the Latin American mining industry today.
Other projects are emerging at a slower pace. Without a doubt, Latin America has become one of the major focal points of investment and mineral extractionin the world over the last five years. This upturn has brought a highly positive change in the outlook of economic activity in the region, opening doors to new investors and mining companies.
AYMA MINING SOLUTIONS OPENS ITS NEW OFFICE IN MADRID
We don’t know the meaning of barriers. If our slogan is We help you go beyond your limits, how could we not also strive to go beyond our own? AYMA Mining Solutions opens its new office in Madrid, offering a range of professional services for AYMA and taking it into a new field: construction, particularly industrial construction.
Our new office is directed by Bernardo Gómez Delgado, project manager and Andalusian architect with more than fifteen years of experience developing projects in the construction, urban planning, civil and industrial engineering sectors. He has worked on projects in Spain, Peru, Santo Domingo, Mexico, Colombia, Jordan, and Morocco, and some of his buildings are known to be among the best European architecture. A major project he completed for the Public Port Authority of Andalusia was the remodeling of the Terrón (Lepe) or Centerario Park fishing port and marina, sponsored by the Port Authority of Algeciras and constructed by Acciona.
In the industrial and mining sectors, he has worked on a variety urban projects, implementing mining activities in Andalusian communities and the facilities at the TECNOMA laboratory (now part of TYPSA) in Mairena del Aljarafe. For four years, he was in charge of building design in the industrial department at OHL, working on projects related to oil and gas, mining and cement, and renewable energies. Noteworthy EPC projects he completed for AYMA include the factory Ecocementos in Colombia, the thermo-solar plant Arenales in Morón de la Frontera, and the re-pumping station Degollado in Mexico.
The AYMA office in Madrid will now be responsible for aligning construction activities with client needs, combining experience gained using the latest technology.
Three words define the character of the office: versatility, innovation, and experience.
Versatility in a changing world
It is an undeniable fact that we live in a constantly changing environment. Knowing how to get around in this environment requires constant observation and thinking outside the limits of our comfort zone in order to get the most out of each situation. According to AYMA’s director, this is the everyday attitude at the new office in Madrid. The office itself is a great example of this attitude. Located in Madwork, a modern and dynamic co-working, it is an open space without cubicles or closed rooms that waxes and wanes, adapting to the needs of each moment, with the best team of professionals that respond to each situation. The internal workflow follows an agile model, going above the top-down organizational structure. Clients are present during all phases of the project, working side by side with the team during the entire development process of the final product.
Innovation as core value
AYMA chooses innovative tools and methods to guarantee the best results for their projects. Choosing digitalization is clear. BIM methodology is the basis of projects in construction and allows us to work with data rather than designs. Digitalization – another characteristic of the company is paper-free – allows for tracking all the information about a specific project, as well as cross-platform search. Additionally, it provides access to information from anywhere, which is in accordance with transparent, collaborative, and remote workplace policies that will be implemented in the office.
Another important effort is continuous research, which is necessary in order to apply technological advances to the workplace on a day to day basis. This is why the team performs lines of research that don’t directly apply to the projects we are developing, but ones that optimize the way we work in our office and open new doors of opportunity.
One of these doors of opportunity is opened through virtual and augmented reality, which allows us to make use of the models we have already used in the engineering phase and use them in the construction, operation, and maintenance phases. As a demonstration, in the inauguration of the AYMA office in Madrid the attendees were able to see projects carried out using VR.
Technology + Experience
We combine both innovation and the experience of having completed projects in different sectors in the world of construction. This experience has provided us with the big picture, which allows us to anticipate problems long before they occur, to prioritize what we know is important, and to ensure that expectations are fulfilled.
A well-known slogan in 1995 stated that power is nothing without control. Today, we can say that technological innovation is nothing without profound knowledge of the sector to which you are applying it. Adapting is crucial in order to achieve higher productivity, reduce errors, save money, and improve construction processes. It is clear to us that in order to do so, experience is fundamental.
New problem-solving tools and the experience to know how to foresee problems before they happen.
WE CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT MINING
It is difficult for mining to make friends.It’s not too popular and that’s a fact. It is perceived as an irresponsible practice that destroys landscapes and causes environmental damage.
We just don’t understand to be honest.
In fact, the opposite should be true since everyone likes what is produced by this irresponsible practice. Do you remember when we talked about the movement Not in my backyard? NIMBY, the abbreviation which was the hash tag of the movement, #NIMBY. What was that? The hash tag! And where are hash tags used? In social media. And what do you need in order to use social media? A computer or a smart phone to be exact. What unpopular activity is necessary to obtain the materials with which they are manufactured? You get the idea.
The latest technologies, however, are not the only reason mining exists today. We have been living with and benefiting from mining for centuries, and in this day and age, one thing is for sure; it is absolutely necessary. To explain why, we will briefly review the most popular raw materials that are mined today and the type of objects and everyday resources that are made from them. Get ready to appreciate mining.
Copper. Copper is obtained by mining and in general, it is the nervous system of all electrical appliances that you use in your daily life. Even your house itself is an electrical appliance.
The next time you turn on your living room light, don’t forget to say, “thank you, mining”.
Iron ore. Iron ore is another material extracted from rocks and turned into steel through a refining process. Iron is used in the structures of houses, buildings, and all types of transportation. In today’s world, it is crucial. Now you know what you have to say when you get on a train or use your car.
Aluminum. Aluminum is another metal that is mined. It is also used in transportation and in a higher quantity than iron, since it is lighter and equally resistant. However, the use of aluminum is less technologically demanding and is used a lot more for things you see on the street. Soda cans, bikes (which don’t pollute the air), some street furniture, appliances or kitchen facilities, etc.
Mining – you don’t want it in your backyard, but in your kitchen, you do.
Other metals are mined as well, including lead, gold, zinc, the last of which is the least well-known and is used in construction, transport, household appliances, and engineering.
It doesn’t just stop there. We’ve talked about metals, but there are other non-metallic materials, and it would be difficult to imagine life without them today.
Calcium Carbonate. In our daily lives, this mineral is mainly used in cosmetic products, although it has many other uses.
Gypsum. This mineral is present in every modern construction, such as houses, tall buildings, stadiums, etc. It is one of the mined minerals with the highest demand and usage.
Supporting respect for the environment is necessary. At AYMA, we fight for a new way of mining that is sustainable and promotes recoverability and even improvement of the mining area. We know that if mining is necessary, which you have seen that indeed it is, then it is our duty to carry out this activity with the highest degree of social responsibility possible. We are advancing towards better mining for the planet and a better future for everyone.
REGISTRATION OPEN FOR MINE VENTILATION COURSE
Training courses for mining professionals are among the many services and activities carried out at Ayma Mining Solutions. These courses are aimed at experienced professionals who are looking to take their careers to the next level. We train industry leaders.
Are you ready to take the next step in your career? Registration for the upcoming course on Mine Ventilation, held at AYMA, begins on April 27th. The objective of this course –taking place from June 18th to 22nd, 2018, in Mairena del Aljarafe, Seville– is to provide in-depth knowledge about the theory, techniques, and processes of interior mine ventilation applied to hard rock mining. This course can also be completed with specialized simulation software, VentSim, in the second semester of the same year.
This course is aimed especially at mining engineers, technical engineers and graduate engineers, and in general, professionals who work in mine ventilation.
The course will be instructed by Rick Brake, an Australian mining engineer with more than 30 years of experience in both underground and open pit operations in Australia and North America. Brake´s CV and career path is highly admirable, and as for AYMA, we believe we couldn´t have found a better instructor for this course. He graduated with honors from the University of Queensland, received an MBA from the University of Deakin, and earned a PhD in physiology from the University of Curtin. He is a Fellow Member of AusIMM, the mine ventilation society of South Africa, and he is a member of the Minerals Industry Consultants Association of Australia.
In addition, he was the Ventilation Superintendent of 4 underground mines in Mount Isa in the mid-1980s. In 1999, he started his own consulting firm, Mine Ventilation Australia, which specialized in areas of mine ventilation and air conditioning, heat stress management, and egress and entrapment. His company provided consulting services for numerous underground mines in Australia, China, Southeast Asia, and Africa. He is a highly reputable instructor with considerable experience and has delivered numerous courses and seminars on mine ventilation, egress and entrapment, and heat stress management, and he has published more than 30 technical articles on these subjects. In 2017, he received the “Howard Hartman” award, one of the most prestigious mining ventilation awards in the world, and was the first non-North American to receive it.
If you are interested in taking part in this course, sign up today as there are only 10 available spots left.
Location: Building Ariete, C/Innovación, 6-8, Industrial Park PISA, 41927 Mairena del Aljarafe, Seville.
Schedule: The course consists of 40 hours of class time. Classes are held from Monday to Friday from 8:00 to 17:00 including coffee and lunch breaks.
- Begins: 8:00 a.m.
- Coffee break: 10:30 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
- Lunch: 1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
- Ends: 5:00 p.m.
Materials: You will be given a hard copy of the course content.
Technology: Attendees must bring a laptop with Windows XP or newer with EXCEL, WORD, and ACROBAT READER. The computer should have a free USB port as well.
Fees: The price of the course is either 3,200 € or 2,800€, depending on early registration. The price includes:
- Hard copy of course content.
- Additional materials and printouts generated throughout the course.
- Coffee breaks in the morning sessions.
The registration deadline is June 11th, and early registration must be completed before May 27th.
If you would like more information about the course and its content, please contact Bárbara Gómez Delgado, AYMA Mining Solutions, at (+34) 659 14 23 01, or send an email to email@example.com.
DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION, PUBLIC IMAGE AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT: CURRENT TRENDS IN THE MINING INDUSTRY
These trends are like the wind. It is nothing new, but it decides in which direction the weather vane is pointing. This weather vane is modern mining, or 21st-century mining. The sustainability of our way of life depends greatly on its growth and direction.
What do these industry trends involve?
First of all, digital transformation, a goal set at the beginning of 2017, will help mining businesses achieve measurable results and allow for the optimization of mining operations. Changing and improving the internal processes and the flow of data are necessary for the sustainable future of the industry.
Secondly, it is imperative to invest more time, money, and effort in renewable energy research. Mining companies, such as AYMA, who already practice 21st-century mining and promote environmental responsibility, operations optimization, work safety, and job creation, must now redirect all of these efforts toward energy efficiency so as not to deplete the planet´s reserves or alter its ecosystems. Engineering and mining are fundamental for modern society and play an important and fundamental role in the fight against global warming.
Another important goal for mining engineering, especially when it comes to achieving any other goal, is improving its public image, not only among consumers, but also among other industries and government agencies. Despite its undeniable contribution to the world economy, the mining industry still carries stigmas associated with topics such as environmental damage, destruction of neighborhoods, alteration of communities, etc. Actions are currently being taken to change its public perception.
Although these are the principle trends in mining, they are not the only ones at play. Other aspects such as innovation are necessary in order to carry out these transformations, to create jobs in local communities, improve water management, and realign directories, which are all crucial for transitioning into the new future of mining. In addition, digitalization and innovation will serve to attract new talent.
The good news is that the mining industry, which is fundamental for industry and our modern way of life, is making an effort to create a better future for everyone, and the winds of sustainability and digitalization are pointing us towards a new era of mining.
ENERGY TRANSITION (1), A LONG WAY TO GO
For those of us who work in the engineering, mining, energy, oil industries, etc., the term energy transition is as for Millennials the term “LOL” (a modern expression used by those who fall in the ages of middle school graduates to those who are not yet parents of teenagers). In other words, it is something we come across every day. For those who are not familiar with the term, in a nutshell, it means achieving a sustainable economy based on the use of renewable energy.
While the facts may be frustrating, what is true is that forms of renewable energy are out there. For some, efficiency has been more than proven, and for others, research continues to open new horizons to create a better future for our planet. However, obstacles due to economic interestsstand in the way. Just imagine what would happen to the world economy if all petrol cars were to disappear suddenly. It would be as if all but one level of the ecological pyramid were to disappear. Humans have notoriously created an artificial ecosystem with the same elements found in nature, the only difference is that ours doesn´t have a sustainable nature.
This is precisely the struggle for energy transition. In fact, it was one of the main topics at the XIV International Conference on Energy and Mineral Resources that took place in Seville during the second week of April, 2018. Its slogan was Sustaining the future, which clearly alludes to the fundamental need for a future driven by energy resources that respect the environment. It is a much more concrete form of economy than the abstract idea of money:
If we run out of resources, the economy will collapse.
The main sources of energy we are all familiar with are oil, biomass (like biogas and natural gas), hydroelectric and solar (thermal and photovoltaic), which are already used. However, there are other lesser-known sources that could provide interesting solutions to the problem of resources if the necessary attention is given to them. This is the case of geothermal power, one of the most promising areas of research and one which we have discussed in a previous article.
But the solution doesn´t only lie in the resources themselves. If we want a sustainable economy from the use of these resources, their optimization and profitability means designing infrastructures that are well thought out for their use. For example, improving the insulation of buildings combined with other intelligent air conditioning systems that work at times when the cost of electricity is lower. Another option to save energy would be to integrate daylighting in the construction of buildings.
The ultimate goal of energy transition is to achieve the formula for no longer using fossil resources without that having repercussions on the sustainability of the economy. It couldn´t be done any other way, not even by overlooking economic interests.
If we didn´t want this ecosystem, we should´ve accepted the one we were given.
In the next entries of the Ayma Blog, we will go further in depth regarding energy transition and we´ll talk about the ideas that were shared at the conference in Seville.
The goal of mining at the moment. Changing its look. Eradicate attributes of contamination, destruction of land and the environment, etc. AYMA, as a modern consulting firm and advocate of 21st-century mining, is committed to its values, making sure they are always present in each operation entrusted to us.
It is a matter of ethics. The Earth is capable of providing us with so much, and engaging in an aggressive raid is not necessary. Our appreciation for everything the planet has to offer is implicit in the way we work.
We´d like to show you some examples of responsible mining in which AYMA has taken part, whether in plan designing, consulting, optimizing working relationships, dealing with land benefits, or ensuring the safety of workers.
We collaborate in many ways with this mining company regarding operations design for the rehabilitation of the Aguas Teñidas Mine. On the one hand, there is a social commitment in which they seek to carry out “programs that produce value and well-being for society” in which “health and safety, the environment, education, and culture are just some of the commitments”. It is currently the company that generates the most employment and wealth in the region.
On the other hand, MATSA implements its environmental commitments through its Environmental Department, carrying out rigorous controlling and monitoring of the consumption of raw materials and natural resources, and preserving the assets of the region. In addition, they offer training courses and environmental awareness. In 2011, MATSA was awarded Business of the Year, by the Onubense Federation of Employers (FOE), in the category of Environment, Energy Conservation, and Use of New Technologies.
Lastly, under the motto “a safe mining operation is a productive one” policies on health and safety of employees is the main internal objective of the company.
Cobre Las Cruces
Seville´s Cobre las Cruces Mine has created its slogan, “21st Century Mining”, which means the exact goal it wants to achieve. It is a clear intention of the company to unite in the commitment of social and environmental responsibility. In fact, it is part of their short-term objectives to become a “leader in 21st-century mining operations”.
Las Cruces has been operating since June of 2009, the year in which mining activity restarted in the area, demonstrating that through good planning, for which they counted on AYMA, it is possible to achieve “optimal production of top-quality copper, in a safe and sustainable way”. Our work with the company was to maximize profits while maintaining these values intact.
AYMA was also a part of this project, which strongly emphasized awareness with respect to the environment and exercising social responsibility.
Under the slogan “promoting the future of clean energy in Europe”, the company´s Project Salamanca gained backing from the European Union. It not only improved the region´s economy by generating 450 direct jobs and some 2.000 indirect, for those that also offered training courses through those that the city could provide the sector in a qualified way, but it also demonstrated concern and care for nature and the environment through the planting of 30.000 oak trees.
At AYMA Mining Solutions, we are highly conciencious, just as mining companies are, of the vital importance of being more of an ally to the environment than just to exploit its resources. This is why our commitment to promote and foster the idea of 21st-century mining in order to achieve a better future for everyone is always integrated in our designs and operations. We are perfectionists. In order to achieve the best, good results and benefits must be in line with caring for the planet. Efficiency means creating a plan that doesn´t have a single negative aspect. In this way, we can change the image of mining. This is how we help to change the future of our planet.
WHAT WE THOUGHT ABOUT MINES
When we talk about 21st-century mining, we are referring to a way of promoting activities that seek to detach mining from the negative image of this industry, which has traditionally been associated with the exploitation of the land and the workers, such as its reputation in the Far East, where the value on gold and diamonds was placed above the workers lives, which were sold to this business. With respect to nature, an environment existed where carbon dioxide wasn´t part of the subject matter in schools.
Mining broke that stigma a long time ago.
At least it has done so internally, and there is a list of short-term objectives for its public image, sustained in four pillars –respect for the environment, technological innovation, work safety, and social responsibility. The achievement of this list is what we understand as 21st-century mining.
Nowadays, the sector as a whole shares a profound consciousness of the importance of interiorizing these values. This consciousness comes from the companies following this path to the government, which will not grant a permit unless they are convinced of strict compliance with the regulations with regard to these four pillars. In fact, this was a hot topic at the Metallic Mining Hall, celebrated in Seville in October of 2017.
We are at a perfect moment for demonstrating this commitment, with the reactivation of old mines in Spain, mainly in Andalusia, caused primarily by this change in attitude. In his article The remaining course in 21st-Century Mining, Jose Luis Bionilla discusses the stigma of mining, referring to its conceptualization in textbooks, where descriptions given to students appear phrases such as “the air is polluted by dust and is deposited in plants and asphyxiates them”, “rivers are contaminated, as water is used to clean the minerals that are extracted”, “through the extraction of minerals leaves landscapes desolate, without living resources”, “dangers for miners include collapse of the mine, exposure to explosive gases, and lung diseases”. They are outdated messages with an archaic tone. It would be like defining today´s public transport as wooden stagecoaches pulled by horses that cannot reach more than 70 kilometers per hour, and with the possibly of being attacked by the Dalton brothers.
Mining of this century is dedicated to the re-education of the population about the mining sector.
Make everyone fundamentally aware that there are safe working conditions and respect for the environment. Currently, in fact, once mining activity has finished, the land is reconstructed, returning plants back into the condition they were found before the process began. One case about environmental consciousness in Spain that stands out is from the company, Berkeley, whose project in Salamanca backed by the European Union consideres supporting the supply of clean energy and the planting of 30.000 oak trees in the area. Cobre Las Crucesis also one of the pioneering mines in Mining in the 21stCentry.
Among the plans to carry out the re-education about mines are visits to the actual mining facilities in order to inform the public about the history of this industry. In Andalusia, for example, the Mining Park that manages Foundation Rio Tintohas a Mining Museum and offers a tour through fabulous landscapes on an old train that was used in the past to transport minerals to the port of Huelva. In addition, there are visits to mining areas that are no longer active.
This plan for re-education is, without a doubt, a great initiative for teaching the public and for mining to be portrayed as it should be to society.
AYMA JOINS TORO MINING CONSULTANTS
AYMA becomes part of TORO Mining Consultants, a strategic association of various companies that specialize in mining to provide comprehensive services to the Latin American industry.
Toro Mining Consultants was created by the strategic union of five highly-qualified consulting firms and leaders in their respective sectors, to provide mining services in Latin America. Our objective is to surpass their expectations as a client and to add value to their business.