Rio Tinto is planning to invest a further AUD 600 million in renewable energy assets in the Pilbara as part of the company’s efforts to decarbonise its Western Australian iron ore operations. The investment will fund the construction of two 100MW solar power facilities as well as 200MWh of on-grid battery storage in the Pilbara by 2026. This is in addition to the 34MW of solar power installed at the recently commissioned Gudai-Darri iron ore mine. Initial funding for Rio Tinto’s first major stand-alone solar farm on the Pilbara coast has been approved, a 100MW solar photovoltaic system and associated transmission infrastructure. Construction, which will involve the installation of approximately 225,000 solar panels built to withstand the Pilbara’s cyclonic conditions, is expected to start next year ahead of project commissioning in 2025. Rio Tinto is engaging with State and local authorities as well as Traditional Owners about the project and relevant approvals. Final capital approval is expected in the second quarter next year.