About: Raw materials

Circular economy 04-06-2020

‘Open strategic autonomy’: A vision for Europe’s raw materials future

Europe’s “green recovery” will be based on industrial leadership in the production of computers, batteries, electric vehicles, and wind turbines, writes Anna-Michelle Asimakopoulou.
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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.
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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.

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.

Using sewage to make Europe’s economy truly circular

Sewage sludge is a potentially vast source of nutrients for fertilisers. The Commission is missing a golden opportunity by excluding it from the Fertiliser Regulation, writes Arne Haarr.

Waste reform: From environmental disaster to economic opportunity

MEPs have the chance to unlock over 800,000 jobs by improving waste management and waste prevention across the EU. If they support progressive waste reform, the benefits will be huge for citizens, businesses and governments, writes Piotr Barczak.

‘Share the knowledge’ at UN’s Quito summit on cities – or wait until 2036

Some 90% of urban growth over the next 30 years will happen in developing countries. If we squander the chance to set them on the path to sustainability now, it may be lost for ever, write Eva Dic and Maria-Theres Haase.

Germany must change stance on opposition to recycling targets

Sustainable enterprises throughout Europe strongly criticise recent German opposition to circular economy recycling targets. No targets, no measures; and without effective measures, the package loses much of its strength to boost circular design and business models, warn Arthur ten Wolde and Alyssa Jade McDonald-Baertl.

EU and New Zealand: Partnership powers in the Pacific

Small developing states in the Pacific have traditionally relied on imports of fossil fuels. The cost of the fuel, combined with its price volatility, and the islands' geographic remoteness, are all significant strains on these small economies, write Andrew Jacobs and Michalis Rokas.
Development Policy 15-06-2016

Europe’s unique chance to clean up its trade in minerals

Around the world, multinational companies dealing with natural resources are fighting a global battle to access, control and extract precious stones, oil, gas, minerals and even plants, writes Cardinal Oscar Rodríguez Maradiaga.

Europe scores own-goal on bio-based chemistry

In its efforts to encourage displacement of fossil fuels by renewable energy, the EU intervened to promote bio-fuels, but ended up discriminating against production of a wider range of bio-based chemical feedstocks in Europe, writes Marco Mensink.

Circular economy: An investment that pays off

There is a new way of thinking, known as the circular economy, which means that products are designed and produced to be used for as long as possible, easily repaired and, once they reach the end of their lives, recycled or disposed of effectively, writes Karmenu Vella.

Why recycling must be on the agenda of COP22

Those serious about tackling climate change should start recognising the huge untapped potential of recycling as a green partner, writes Ranjit Baxi.
Development Policy 27-02-2014

The EU must seize the opportunity to keep conflict minerals out of Europe

If the European Commission wants to help cool the 40% of inter-state conflicts linked to natural resources, it needs to propose legislation ensuring that European consumers can buy conflict-free goods, says Patrick Alley. 

China in Greenland: A challenge for the European Union

There are clear signs of competition between the European Union and China to gain access to the strategic assets of Greenland, and they will continue to show during Hu Jintao's state visit in Denmark these days, argues Damien Degeorges.

Resource efficiency: A global game changer

The EU has established resource efficiency as one of its seven flagship initiatives for the 2020 agenda, and its roadmap is supported by many programmes and initiatives on the ground. Yet, it is a tiger without teeth, claims the latest report by the Transatlantic Academy, a research institution that aims to create common approaches for the long-term challenges faced by Europe and North America.

Sustainability: A lever for economic growth

Investing in sustainable industries is a win-win situation that will boost the much-needed growth in the EU while creating a sustainable and eco-friendly environment, writes Antonio Tajani, commissioner for industry and Entrepreneurship.

Resource-efficiency: Europe can set a global example

The European Commission's roadmap for a resource-efficient Europe proposes a decent way forward to transform the Union into a sustainable economy, writes Bas de Leeuw from the World Resources Forum.

Europe, China and the quest for rare earths

Had it not been all too easy in the past to rely on China for supplying Europe's high-tech industries with rare earths, we would not have fallen asleep at the wheel, writes Reinhard Bütikofer, a Green MEP, in an exlusive commentary for EURACTIV.