EU’s critical minerals act welcome but falling short, say green groups and industry

(EurActiv, 7 Dec 2023) The EU’s Critical Raw Materials Act, adopted on Thursday (7 December), aims to reduce permitting times for domestic mining and recycling projects but fails to create the broader conditions necessary for companies to make those investments, the industry says – a warning echoed by green activists.

Lawmakers in the European Parliament’s industry committee voted on Thursday to rubber-stamp a political agreement reached last month with EU countries on the Critical Raw Materials Act.

The new law, initially tabled in March by the European Commission, aims to reduce the bloc’s dependency on China for metals like rare earths, needed for making clean tech products such as electric cars and wind turbines.

The text voted in Parliament sets aspirational targets for Europe to domestically extract 10% and process 40% of its annual consumption of key minerals by 2030. The EU will also aim to recycle 25% of critical raw materials ending up in its waste by the same date.

With the Parliament’s vote secured, the law will now be formally adopted by the Council of the EU, representing the bloc’s 27 member states.

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EurActiv, 7 Dec 2023: EU’s critical minerals act welcome but falling short, say green groups and industry