Less CO2 and more ‘critical materials’, the formula for implementing the ecological transition

critical minerals

Less CO2 and more ‘critical materials’, the formula for implementing the ecological transition

Domenico De Rosa, CEO of SMET: ‘The ecological transition is energy transition and must be transition to ‘critical minerals’. The danger is to make Europe subordinate to China’ 

Less CO2 and more ‘critical materials’ – i.e. lithium, silicon, copper, rubber, graphite, nickel, cobalt – which Europe does not have and which Asia is making less and less available for geopolitical reasons.

The ecological transition has triggered a green battle, which is played out on the table of finding the critical materials that are needed in greater quantities than fossil fuels. A school example might be the electric car, which requires six times more critical materials than a conventional car would need. In addition to more copper and manganese, which are needed for construction, electric cars also require materials such as graphite, nickel, cobalt, lithium and other rare earth elements.

Domenico De Rosa, CEO of the SMET Group, has spoken on the debate, which is currently being reported in the press. He emphasises: “Following these months animated by deep perplexity expressed throughout Europe on the ban on endothermic engines from 2035, a European strategy inscribed in the path towards ecological transition, a reflection is a must: ecological transition is energy transition, but above all it must be a transition towards ‘critical minerals’. This is a list of increasingly fundamental raw materials of which Europe is in short supply and which the ‘new cold globalisation’ makes less accessible. Basically, the new equation we will have to work on is: less CO2, but more critical materials’.

De Rosa also recalls data from the Enea report on the subject, according to which renewables require more steel, aluminium and cement per unit of capacity than fossil fuel-based generation technologies. According to SMET’s CEO, “the report figures demonstrate the European Parliament’s dark dirigisme disguised as ecological aims”.

“These are clearly ideologies that risk wiping out years of technological history and millions of jobs,” explains De Rosa, “with the only dangerous result of making Europe subordinate to China. We are also witnessing progressive tactics to bring Chinese industry closer to the European market. The picture is increasingly clear: the EU is also dependent on imports of resources needed for the green transition, as evidenced by the need for critical raw materials. A serious transition plan would have taken this into account as well, before deliberating mindlessly’.