The world is crying out for rare minerals for the manufacture of electric cars, wind turbines and other technologies that we simply need more of. But how can we guarantee access to these resources without threatening the natural world and mankind as we know it?
Scientists and policymakers rely on complex computer simulations called Integrated Assessment Models to figure out how to address climate change. But these models need tinkering to make them more accurate.
Europe wants to reduce its needs for raw materials and raise the level of recycling of resources in the solar power industry. If this project is successful, greenhouse gas emissions from solar panel manufacture will fall by 25 to 30 per cent.
With Norway as a case study, a first-ever effort to quantify the benefits of recycling food waste versus preventing it shows prevention is the best policy. But Norway continues to invest significant funds in biogas facilities for food waste recycling.
Producing pure aluminium from ore accounts for as much as 1 per cent of all greenhouse gas emissions worldwide. Recycling is the best way to reduce that carbon footprint – but manufacturers and recycling companies will have to plan carefully to avoid problems with impurities that accumulate in recycled aluminium over time.
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