Patent applications related to ESG increased by 9% per year on average in the mining industry since 2020

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The global mining industry experienced a 9% rise in annual average growth rate (AAGR) in the number of patent applications concerning environmental, social and governance (ESG) affairs made between 2020 and 2022. The total number of ESG-related grants increased by an AAGR of 9% during the same period, according to GlobalData's patent analytics database.  

Notably, the number of ESG-related patent applications in the mining industry was 7,727 since 2020, while 4,733 applications were granted.

The top five companies by filings accounted for 44% of patent applications

Analysis of patent applications by assignee shows that POSCO filed the most ESG patents within the mining industry since 2020. The company filed 893 ESG-related patents since 2020.  

It was followed by JFE (861 applications), Kobe Steel (433 applications), ENEOS (324 applications) and China Baowu Steel Group (318 applications).

The top five companies by grants accounted for 41% of successful patent grants

Analysis of patent grants by assignee shows that POSCO was granted 434 patents related to ESG within the mining industry since 2020. It was followed by JFE (424 grants), Kobe Steel (302 grants), ENEOS (22 grants) and ArcelorMittal (211 grants).

Patent activity was driven by China with a 44% share of total patent publications  

The largest share of ESG-related patent publications in the mining industry since 2020 was held by China with 44%, followed by Japan (15%) and South Korea (7%).

GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patents Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official patent offices around the world. Proprietary analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.