03 Nov 2023, 13:29
Carolina Kyllmann

Germany still in initial stages of easing up domestic raw material extraction – media

Tagesspiegel Background

Germany is currently heavily dependent on imports of raw materials key for energy transition technologies, but the government is only in the early stages of liberalising domestic extraction options, energy policy newsletter Tagesspiegel Background reported. Facilitating raw material extraction within Germany to increase resilience would require regulatory amendments, but the corresponding laws are currently still being drafted and there is currently no timetable, the newsletter reported based on answers by the economy ministry (BMWK) to a parliamentary inquiry by opposition party CDU/CSU on the implementation status of German raw material policy. The government expects to remain dependent on lithium imports in future, so international partnerships with resource-rich countries like Chile should be strengthened. German and European companies are in talks with Chilean companies to participate in the projects and secure supply contracts, Tagesspiegel Background reported.

Germany's government should make the country's landmark energy transition more crisis-resilient by reducing dependence on raw materials that are needed for technologies such as wind power, solar energy, batteries, electric motors and fuel cells, advisors said in May. A report commissioned by the economy and climate ministry (BMWK) in 2022 said that Germany imports 39 of the 46 most relevant raw materials needed to achieve strategic targets in energy and industrial policy. The European Union is working in parallel to secure a reliable supply of strategically important raw materials for the bloc, as it expects a steep rise in lithium in cobalt demand by the end of the decade. At least ten percent of the annual consumption of critical raw materials is to be mined within the EU, according to the Critical Raw Materials Act, presented by the European Commission in March. Moreover, no more than 65 percent of the annual demand for a strategic raw material should come from a single country.

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