About: Raw materials

Raw materials in the EU economy

Securing access to critical raw materials has become a strategic objective for the European Union as the bloc moves towards ever-more digitalisation and green, high-tech products. In this special report, EURACTIV looks at some of the essential building blocks of the 21st century economy.
Raw materials
Circular economy 11-12-2019

Europe waking up to raw materials ‘criticality’

Access to critical raw materials used in digital and clean technologies was labelled as "a strategic security question" in a European Green Deal unveiled today (11 December). A new industrial policy is expected to complete the picture next year.
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Europe’s industrial value chains: The road to prosperity and growth

In the immense challenge of deploying green technologies and expanding the use of renewable energy, strengthening the technological revolution, and further developing artificial intelligence and the internet of things, raw materials will become indispensable for Europe’s digital transformation and climate transition.

Northvolt ‘will source directly from the miners’ to ensure clean supply chain

A short supply chain “will make it possible for us to trace our materials” and ensure they come from responsible sources, said a senior executive at Northvolt, the Swedish startup aiming to supply Europe with green electric batteries.
Energy 18-11-2019

Raw materials: Aiming for sovereignty

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In face of fierce global competition, how can Europe secure access to key raw materials for the future of its industry?
Circular economy 18-11-2019

Breaking new ground: The EU’s push for raw materials sovereignty

A new pro-mining investment policy, more free trade deals, and an incoming "geopolitical" European Commission signals the EU will stake more claim on critical raw materials.
Circular economy 14-11-2019

China in focus as West debates critical minerals challenge

Western powers will attend talks in Brussels next week on curbing China's dominance of rare earths and other critical resources and EU officials will present their vision to create entire green supply chains.
Batteries 02-07-2019

Europe takes on China’s global dominance of rare earth metals

A new industry association was launched in Brussels last week with the aim of bringing together all the players in the supply chain of rare earth metals, which are vital to renewable and low-carbon technologies.
Batteries 13-06-2019

The EU is creating a sustainability label for raw materials

An EU research group is creating a certification method for raw materials, to be completed by 2021. The project is part of a push to sustainably mine the metals needed for Europe’s clean energy transition. But critics say certification is not the answer.
Batteries 07-06-2019

UK scientists warn raw material output must surge to match EV growth

British climate targets will require the current annual global production of cobalt to double by 2050, in order to satisfy electric vehicle growth demands. A large increase in other raw materials will also be needed, according to UK scientists.
Circular economy 13-03-2019

Resource extraction responsible for half world’s carbon emissions

Extraction industries are responsible for half of the world's carbon emissions and more than 80% of biodiversity loss, according to the most comprehensive environmental tally undertaken of mining and farming. EURACTIV's media partner, The Guardian, reports.
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Circular economy 23-11-2018

Raw materials: The foundation of a prosperous European future

Forming the basis of our cities, digitalisation and the European energy transition, raw materials are essential components in manufacturing the products of the future, writes Roman Stiftner. With the emergence of new demand, now is the right time for stakeholders to come together and respond to this challenge, he argues.
Circular economy 22-11-2018

Europe’s mining sector faces skilled workers shortage

Trade unions expressed concerns on Tuesday (20 November) about a shortage of skilled workers in the extraction industry, saying this is becoming a problem for Europe at a time of rising global demand for raw materials.
Circular economy 21-11-2018

Race for lithium illustrates EU drive for ‘strategic’ raw materials

The European Union is accelerating plans to develop lithium mining and refining capacity on its territory as part of a concerted EU push to develop a strategic value chain for manufacturing electric car batteries inside Europe.
Circular economy 20-11-2018

EU’s Sefcovic: Real risk that ‘raw materials become the new oil’

Europeans have to be “very vigilant” that today’s dependency on imported oil and gas is not replaced by dependency on lithium, cobalt, copper and other raw materials that industries need for the green transition, Maroš Šefčovič told EURACTIV in an exclusive interview.
Circular economy 19-11-2018

The global race for raw materials

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The European Union first adopted a raw materials strategy in 2008, at a time when commodity prices were at an all-time high and fears were running high of a global scramble for natural resources. The financial crash that followed conveniently swept the issue under the carpet. But this may have only been temporary.
Circular economy 14-11-2018

Metals: Friend or foe of the green economy?

The green economy usually brings to mind traditional renewable materials such as wood, biomass, water and earth. Less likely poster children are the big metals that have formed the backbone of the industrial revolution – steel, copper, iron, tin and aluminium.
Circular economy 12-11-2018

Raw power

Vanadium, borate, bismuth, gallium – they may sound like planets from a science fiction movie, but in fact they are some of the most critical elements of the European Union’s economy.  
Circular economy 12-11-2018

Metals in the circular economy

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Metals are essential components in the manufacturing of smart phones, electric car batteries and other green technologies. In this special report, EURACTIV looks at how the EU's circular economy strategy can help secure Europe's supply of critical raw materials in a sustainable way.
Electric vehicles 23-05-2018

Blossoming batteries boosted by EU plan

Batteries and storage are set to become even more important as electro-mobility and renewable energy go from strength to strength. That is why EU efforts are meant to help the burgeoning industry compete against the likes of China and electric carmaker Tesla.

There’s no escape from the ‘economics of enough’

If we want to reduce the use of natural resources and energy in absolute terms, a sufficiency strategy is needed to complement the eco-efficiency and circular economy approaches, write Riccardo Mastini and Leida Rijnhout.
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Agrifood 27-03-2018

Flawed Commission advanced biofuel costings fail taxpayers and consumers

Key European Commission documents refer to substantial cost savings when transitioning from conventional to advanced biofuels. This cost saving claim is actively implied but never explained, nor are solid references provided. It is just presented as a fact in important decision-supporting documents.
Circular economy 07-03-2018

Is deep-sea mining worth the risk?

There is no evidence that deep-sea mining will reduce our dependency on land-based mining. We need to end business as usual and act to reduce the demand for these raw materials by making the transition towards a circular economy, write a group of Greens/EFA MEPs.
Energy 17-02-2017

A Canadian circular economy reality

Edmonton has become the first city which turns all non-compostable and non-recyclable household waste into methanol, ethanol and green chemicals. Europe should take notice, writes Lambert van Nistelrooij.

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