The European Union is accelerating plans to develop lithium mining and refining capacity on its territory as part of a concerted EU push to develop a strategic value chain for manufacturing batteries for electric cars inside Europe.
There can be no wind or solar energy, no smart grids and no electric vehicles without copper, aluminium or steel, to name but a few. What Europe must do is enable advanced processing of materials in order to close the loop, writes Dr Katia Lacasse.
Negotiations on the re-approval of copper compounds, which are due to be gradually phased out, are still ongoing. The European Commission is expected to present a new proposal to EU member states next month, at a meeting that was not originally scheduled.
We should stop focusing on economy over health when it comes to pesticides, said MEP Eric Andrieu, the president of the PEST committee in the European Parliament. But in the case of toxic copper, he urged member states to keep in mind that the viability of organic winery is at stake and that alternatives to copper are very limited.