The state of play: Critical minerals and the renewable energy transition
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The state of play: Critical minerals and the renewable energy transition

When: 6 October 2023 | 15:50-16:50

Format: Roundtable discussion

Venue: Breakout room 2 (Adenauer-Saal)

Read the op-ed "The State of Play for Critical Mineral Policies: A Berlin Climate Security Conference Roundtable" based of the session here.

The last year has seen a wave of new legislation that seek to diversify and secure the mineral supply chains critical to the renewable energy transition. New laws and partnerships are being shaped by – and are shaping – geopolitical trends that affect peace and stability around the world. From the United States’ Inflation Reduction Act, to the EU’s CRM Act, the partnership between Canada and Korea to expand bilateral critical minerals cooperation, and the US and Japan’s critical minerals agreement, these export control policies have cascading impacts within and across borders. The African continent, for instance, is home to many of the raw materials critical to the global decarbonization race. As such, any energy transition in Africa comes with opportunities and risks. How will countries and industry grapple with inconsistencies between policies and approaches? As the digital economy grows and Russia’s war in Ukraine shows no signs of slowing, how do we know that the minerals secured through newly forged supply chains will be used to power the global energy transition? While China’s dominant position in the global supply chain for critical minerals has inspired many of policy responses, what are the actual impact of these policies on China’s position? And what do recent waves of legislation for supply chain resilience in the US and EU mean for the energy transition pathways being forged by developing countries? During this discussion, government representatives, private industry and researchers explored the state of play in minerals supply chains and what these new laws and partnerships actually mean for the clean energy transition.


  • Jojo Nem Singh, Assistant Professor, Erasmus University Rotterdam
  • Helge Elisabeth Zeitler, Deputy Head Of Unit Global Resources, Deforestation, Water International - Directorate-General for Environment, European Commission 
  • Dhesigen Naidoo, Senior Research Associate on African Futures & Innovation at the Institute for Security Studies (ISS Africa)

Moderated by Claire Doyle, Program Associate, Wilson Center

Introductory remarks by Kate Guy, Managing Director, Climate Security and Cross Cutting Issues, Office of the Special Presidential Envoy for Climate.

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