sharing in governance of extractive industries
In spite of the U.S. government’s possible withdrawal from the Paris climate accord, policies to reduce carbon emissions continue to gather pace. In July, the U.K. government announced plans to ban the sale of gasoline and diesel cars by 2040, following in the footsteps of France. India and Norway aim to do the same by 2030 and 2025, respectively.
These are the latest signs of a global economy moving away from carbon-intensive fossil fuels toward renewable energy, which will have far-reaching effects on demand for extractive resources. Clean technologies require large quantities of metals and rare minerals, the majority of which are mined in developing countries. Two recent studies—a World Bank reportand a paper in the journal Nature—examine the implications of this demand.
Exactly which technologies authorities and manufacturers will adopt is uncertain. The World Bank report focuses on solar photovoltaics, wind turbines and batteries, and identifies minerals and metals likely to be required for future energy needs. Using the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), they provide country level data for identified reserves of these commodities.
We have run this data against 2017 Resource Governance Index (RGI) scoring and found that across the different minerals, on average 42 percent of reserves are in countries with “good” or “satisfactory” resource governance, 37 percent are in countries with “weak” scores (China accounts for 14 percent of this total) and a further 7 percent are in countries that score “poor.” Almost none of the reserves are in countries that are “failing” in their resource governance.
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