The raw material of the “sustainable” world is in the mines
Rüstem Çetinkaya, who is the Mining Industry President of the Turkish Exporters Assembly (TİM) Sectors Council, said that fossil fuel consumption will decrease to almost zero in 2050 in developed countries that are included in the zero emission target and that renewable energy sources will leave their mark on the world. Cetinkaya said that “Critical mines such as copper, lithium, cobalt, nickel, graphite and manganese will now be indispensable parts of our daily lives. We have to produce our own mines if we do not want to be dependent on foreign energy in 2050. Environmentalist approaches and mining will operate in the same cluster in the near future, and seeing this situation as irony now has the same meaning as ignoring reality.”
The mining industry, seems to shape the future of the world as well as its economic support. It is spoken about concepts such as renewable energy sources, mass production of electric cars, target of 2050 in zero emission, the European Union’s Green Deal criteria and clean energy will be indispensable concepts of life in the next century. There are ‘Critical minerals’, that is, mines, at the starting point of these concepts according to the reference institutions of the energy markets. Concrete determinations regarding the sustainable future of the world were included in the “Role of Critical Minerals in Clean Energy Transitions” report of the International Energy Agency (IEA).
“THE CRITICAL METALS WILL MARK THE NEXT CENTURY”
Rüstem Çetinkaya, who argued that the mining sector has a very wrong perception especially in terms of environmentalism and that the industry will be the leading actor in a more livable world contrary to the perception in question, said that: “In my opinion, this is not an irony, it is the reality itself. The future of a more livable world lies in the mines. The report of the International Energy Agency clearly shows that critical mines will leave their mark on the next century. We can see what kind of future the world will evolve into when we look at the rate of increase in the number of electric vehicles in traffic today. Rare earth elements such as copper, cobalt, lithium, nickel, boron and manganese will be the new raw material of the global production ecosystem in the very near future. The way to reach the target of 2050 in zero emission is to make critical mines raw materials in production. Countries that have a say in the global economy have already created a strategy in this regard. As a country that has almost a treasury under its soil, we must take concrete steps and create a strategy in this regard. Likewise, the demand for lithium will increase 42 times in 2040 compared to today according to the report of the International Energy Agency. Instead of seeing mines as a phenomenon that harms the environment, let’s have the idea that it is the key to environmental approaches. If we make improvements in matters such as license processes and license security, and activate the investment environment, we will provide significant gains to both the environment and the economy.”
“IF WE DO NOT WANT TO BE DEPENDENT ON OTHER COUNTRIES IN 2050, WE MUST EXPLORE OUR OWN MINES”
Çetinkaya who stated that fossil fuel consumption in the world will almost end in 2050, said that “After this date, renewable electrical energy will be in use. In other words, after 30 years from now, we will have to be dependent on mines. The demand for minerals in electric vehicle batteries and storage is expected to increase at least 30 times by 2040, according to the International Energy Agency. As low-carbon electricity generation becomes increasingly common, the demand for critical minerals in this sector is projected to triple by 2040. In summary, if we do not want to be dependent on foreign energy in 2050, we will not be in a position to produce our own mines.”
SUSTAINABLE CONTRIBUTION TO BOTH ECONOMY AND ENVIRONMENT
Rüstem Çetinkaya who stated that the mining industry contributes uninterruptedly to Turkey’s total exports, said that “Turkey has a serious potential in critical mines. Today, you must produce according to the criteria in the ‘Green Deal’ in order to trade with European Union countries. Existing commodities in the global economy will leave their place to critical mines for the future of the world. If we focus on this fact and approach our country’s mining with a collective mentality rather than an exclusionary point of view, it would not be a dream for our 4.27 billion dollar mine export to increase 10 times in the near future.”
THE NUMBERS SHOW THAT THE FUTURE OF THE WORLD LIES IN THE MINES
According to the International Energy Agency’s ‘The Role of Critical Minerals in Clean Energy Transformations’ report, 30 years from now, the demand for graphite will increase 25 times, the demand for cobalt 21 times, the demand for nickel 19 times, and the demand for rare earth elements 7 times in order to realize the clean energy transformation. Around 90 percent of the total demand for lithium used in electric vehicle and battery storage in 2040 is expected to come from the transformation in the energy sector.