Archive for 6.8 Other, Renewable Energy Relevant

A 21st Century Scramble: South Africa, China and Rare Earths Metals Industry

The first CCS Discussion Paper for 2012 analyses the peculiar structure of the rare earth elements (REE) industry, a sector dominated by China, and the global implications of current upheavals within the sector, especially as they concern South Africa’s (re)emerging rare earths production. Rare earths are used in a range of products, not least so in the so-called ‘green technologies’ such as energy-saving light bulbs or windmills. The author is a PhD student in politics at the University of Bristol.  His doctoral research concerns the impact of the rise of China on the global developmental political economy, centring on extractive industries in Africa and Latin America. This paper is a parallel publication with the South African Institute of International Affairs (SAIIA) and was published also as SAIIA Occasional Paper 113. 

6 Renewable Energy, 6.8 Other, Renewable Energy Relevant

The Electric Car Battery: Sustainability in the Supply Chain

The supply chain of the electric car battery is faced with serious sustainability challenges. This is the conclusion of the SOMO report “The electric car battery; sustainability in the supply chain”. The expected profits from lithium, one of the basic materials for the electric car battery, already create social tensions in Bolivia, while worker’s rights are violated at battery manufacturing plants in China. These issues need to be taken into account when companies and politicians discuss the costs and benefits of the electric car.

6 Renewable Energy, 6.8 Other, Renewable Energy Relevant