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As we’ve been discussing for months, the Digital and Energy transition will require an extensive amount of metals. We are organising a round table on June 29 10am-1 pm to discuss the impact this will have in Poland.
The energy transition and the development of renewable energy sources are not the only sustainable transformations that will require large amounts of metals. The electrification of transport, the digitalisation (with all telecommunications and computerization devices) and, more broadly, the increase in the demand for batteries will also demand a significant quantity of certain minerals.
The European Commission predicts that in order to achieve climate neutrality by 2050, the EU will need 60 times more lithium, 15 times more cobalt and 10 times more rare earth metals than today – for the energy transition alone. Considering that the EU currently depends 75 to 100% on metal imports, mainly from China, this has serious geopolitical ramifications.
The European Commission aims for the Union to be as independent as possible to find the means to implement the European Green Deal. Working towards (or returning to) a metal mining production system in the EU is a serious option to consider as environmental and social standards are much higher in the EU than in developing countries. But of course, the EU needs to start by developing the potential of the circular economy and recycling systems. Exploiting the accumulated mining and industrial waste containing metals, and developing and improving the collection of products containing metals, their recycling and recovery of raw materials, and perhaps finished alloys.
Does our current economic model based on constant growth -and thus consumption- offer a chance for such subversive reductions in greenhouse gas emissions as assumed by the European Green Deal? Are we not supposed to embrace a transformation of the economic model?
About the event
As for the situation in Poland, many questions remain unanswered:
- What are the national needs when it comes to metals?
- What are the blocking elements in the demand for metals for the green and digital transformation?
- Where are the red lines to watch out for and priorities to defend?
- What are the positions on these issues?
This round table will provide as many answers as possible to these questions and explore paths for further analysis.
This project is organised by the Green European Foundation with the support of Fundacja Strefa Zieleni and with the financial support of the European Parliament to the Green European Foundation. The European Parliament is not responsible for the content of this event.