Damned if we do, damned if we don’t

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The World Bank has spoken. It is generally an alarmist mob. However it suggests that the push to achieve the Paris Climate Accord objectives could in fact put an environmental strain on the world as the demand for rare earths and other materials that go into the manufacture of renewables and batteries would create challenges in terms of energy, water and land use. A sort of damned if you do, damned if you don’t mentality. Governments need to realise that mineral development is a “complement and not a competitor to a greener, more sustainable future”, said Mr Riccardo Puliti, global head of the World Bank’s Energy and Extractive group. To paraphrase, Puliti said that those countries seeking to hit climate goals may well fall short if they fail to effectively manage the production of raw materials.

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