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Climate-Smart Mining: Minerals for Climate Action

Video summarizing why climate-smart mining is needed for a low-carbon future.

World Bank Group


Overview

In 2017, the World Bank published “The Growing Role of Minerals and Metals for a Low Carbon Future”, which concluded that to realize a lower-carbon future there will be a substantial increase in demand for several key minerals and metals to manufacture cleaner energy technologies. 

In other words, the clean energy transition will be significantly mineral intensive.

And while the growing demand for minerals and metals provides economic opportunities for resource-rich developing countries and private sector entities alike, significant challenges will likely emerge if the climate-driven clean energy transition is not managed responsibly and sustainably.

The Climate-Smart Mining Facility will help resource-rich developing countries benefit from the increasing demand for minerals and metals, while ensuring the mining sector is managed in a way that minimizes the environmental and climate footprint.

The Facility supports the sustainable extraction and processing of minerals and metals to secure supply for clean energy technologies by minimizing the social, environmental, and climate footprint throughout the value chain of those materials by scaling up technical assistance and investments in resource-rich developing countries.

While the growing demand for minerals and metals provides economic opportunities for resource-rich developing countries and private sector entities alike, significant challenges will likely emerge if the climate-driven clean energy transition is not managed responsibly and sustainably.


Without Climate-Smart Mining practices, negative impacts from mining activities will increase, affecting already-vulnerable communities in developing countries, as well as the environment in which they operate. 

The Climate-Smart Mining approach has been developed in concert with the broader UN Sustainable Development Goals to ensure the decarbonization of the mining and energy sectors also benefits resource-rich countries that host these strategic minerals and the communities directly impacted by their extraction.

Climate-Smart Mining builds on the work the World Bank is doing to help ensure resource-rich developing countries benefit from their mineral resources and manage them in a sustainable manner, while fostering economic growth and development. Our technical support also helps governments improve the investment climate by strengthening governance and building the capacities of key institutions, policy frameworks and legislation.

The World Bank wants to ensure that resource-rich developing countries also benefit from the new mineral demand by de-risking investments using sustainable and responsible resource development strategies.

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Infographic references: Clean Technica, Half a Trillion Dollars to Build Huge Desertec Plan?, Kraemer, S. June 2009; Financial Times,Solar power driving new demand for silver, Sanderson, H. May 2016; Fortune, Why Tesla's grid batteries will use two different chemistries, Fehrenbacher, K. May 2015; International Copper Association, The Long-Term Availability of Copper, October 2017; International Energy Agency, Energy Technology Perspectives 2017 - Catalysing Energy Technology Transformations. IEA. June 2017; International Energy Agency, Renewables 2018: Market Analysis and Forecast from 2018 to 2023. October 2018; International Renewable Energy Agency, End-of-life management: Solar Photovoltaic Panels, IRENA. June 2016; McKinsey Global Institute, Beyond the Supercycle: How Technology is Reshaping Resources, February 2017; Northwest Mining Association, Wind Power Needs American Metals & Minerals, 2013; Qnovo, Inside the Battery of a Nissan Leaf. QNOVO. July 2015; Rocky Mountain Institute. Toward Sustainable Mining, Sunshine for Mines. July 2017; The Energy Mix, Congo Cobalt Will Continue to Supply Emerging European Battery Industry, Deign, J. June 2018; World Bank, Mineral Demand Analysis of Energy Technologies Based on IEA ETP 2017 Scenarios. World Bank, September 2018.

 


For more information on this program and to get involved, please contact the Climate-Smart Mining team on csm@worldbank.org