Critical Raw Materials: Irena Promotes Cooperation

24. March 2022 | Market

New platform founded for the exchange of ideas and coordination of measures.

Strategic raw materials such as rare earths, technology metals, but also precious metals like palladium and iridium are of central importance for the success of the global energy transition. They are needed for emission-free mobility, sustainable energy generation and the decarbonization of industry. From the perspective of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the increasing demand is accompanied by price and supply risks. With a new platform, IRENA wants to give its members the opportunity to share knowledge and best practices, as well as coordinate projects that serve the success of the energy transition by securing the supply of raw materials, according to a press release. IRENA has launched similar projects in the past, such as on green hydrogen and geopolitical aspects of the energy transition.

The price fluctuations observed in recent weeks and months for some of these critical materials show why this issue needs to be taken seriously, said Director General Francesco La Camera. This probably also means the war in Ukraine and the sanctions against Russia, which have led to a sharp rise in the price of nickel and palladium, among others. Technical innovations, but also the substitution of certain materials, could help to cover the demand for raw materials. However, priority must be given to the sustainable expansion of mining and processing capacities, La Camera added.

Photo: iStock/lovelyday12

California MP_Materials