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IRTC 2023

Workshops descriptions

Part I: Rare Earths – Assessing the permanent magnet motor sustainability (CSyARES Project)

15 February, 10:30 – 12:00

During the workshop, REIA and its project partners will provide a hands-on training on the tool we developed to overcome the sustainability and traceability challenges and provide practical sessions on developing a metrics for sustainable mining, sourcing and the establishment of the global sustainability standard for REEs.

The key outcome of the training session would be you get familiar with:

  • An assessment system to enable the calculation of REE supply chain data with integrated measuring and improving socio‐environmental impact
  • A blockchain digital ledger with inbuilt data security via cryptography, featuring the ability to identify supply‐chain vulnerabilities and opportunities.

10.30-10.40:    Introduction of the Consortium and CSyARES, Nabeel Mancheri, REIA

10.40-10.50:    Principle of LCA and Introduction of Mine LCA, Robert Pell & Jordan Lindsay, Minviro

10.50-11.20:     Mine LCA Demonstration and Hands on Exercise  

11.20-11.30:    Introduction of Blockchain, and Principles of Digital Twin, Teresa Oberhauser, Circularise

11.30-12.00:    Demonstration and Hands on Exercise 

12.00-12.05:    Wrap up

Requirement: Participants are requested to bring their laptops.

This event is made possible by a generous grant from EIT Raw Materials for CSyARES Project.

Part II: Resource and criticality challenges in diverse lead industrial sectors

15 February, 13:30 – 15:30

CEDaCI: Circular Economy for the Data Centre Industry

By: Prof. Deborah Andrews (London South Bank University, UK) & Dr. Naeem ADIBI (WeLOOP)

The CEDaCI project was established in 2018 to explore and demonstrate the potential benefits of a circular economy for the data centre industry; a systemic whole life cycle methodology is employed to address challenges at all life cycle stages.

In this presentation, we test together with workshop participants, the unique CEDaCI digital tool – the Circular Data Centre Compass – which enables stakeholders to make informed decisions in line with business priorities regarding the procurement of new or second life equipment, choice of end-of-life scenarios, and the design for circularity of new equipment.

Territorial LCA of the battery sector in the North of France

By: Dr. Naeem Adibi & Kim Luu & Agathe Wattelier (WeLOOP)

Electrified mobility includes electric vehicles, hybrid electric vehicles, and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. E-mobility will dominate the transport market within the EU. Rechargeable lithium-ion batteries are essential technologies for the full deployment of E-mobility. The market uses different Li-ion battery technologies, such as NMC, LFP, etc. The purpose of this presentation is to present the battery supply and circular economy challenges from a sustainability point of view in the regional context of the North of France. 

Participation in this workshop is free of charge. The number of participants in is limited; priority will be given to a balanced mixture of stakeholder groups.

Part I: Open stakeholder consultation workshop

15 February, 10:30 – 12:00

The project IRTC-Training is developing certified training courses in material risk management that allow industry professionals to evaluate their companies’ specific risks, and to take actions to reduce those risks. IRTC-Training aims to i) provide the required knowledge to comprehend the theory and application of criticality concepts, and ii) equip  the learner with the competencies to select appropriate criticality mitigation strategies for the raw materials used in their organisation, and adapt those to the organisation’s needs.

This workshop brings together stakeholders from different areas to discuss the educational concept of the project IRTC-Training. In an interactive way, we will present the progress of the training development together with the expert group that is guiding the accompanying ISO certification. Workshop participants will be asked to provide their feedback on envisaged contents and structure of the trainings and give input on the competencies they wish in future raw material risk managers. Through this workshop, we want to actively involve different perspectives and expectations in the training development process.

We encourage stakeholders from industry, NGOs, universities, policy-making, and civil society to participate and have an active voice in the education of future raw material risk managers.

Part II: IRTC-Business Decision Tool training: Understand raw material risks in the supply chain

15 February, 13:30 – 15:30

For a transition to a low-carbon future, it is of crucial importance to have a secure material basis for the deployment of electromobility, renewable energy production, and related sectors. Companies must be empowered to spot material risks in their supply chains and possess the tools to effectively mitigate them.

During this workshop, participants are introduced to the concept of raw material criticality from the perspective of a company. Participants will use the IRTC Decision Tool, which was developed by the project IRTC-Business. The training  provides the following learning outcomes:

  • Explain the concept of “criticality” from the perspective of a company
  • Identify different factors that contribute to raw material criticality (e.g. concentration of supply, environmental impacts, etc.)
  • Understand how these factors contribute to company risks
  • Identify different mitigation measures to decrease criticality
  • Name advantages and disadvantages of the different mitigation strategies
  • Analyse raw material risks by the use of a newly developed webtool

Participation in this workshop is free of charge.

Part I: Navigating the Challenges of Critical Raw Materials: An Overview of UNFC and UNRMS

15 February, 10:30 – 12:00

Understanding the challenges of managing CRMs, including climate change, food, water, and geopolitical conflicts. An overview of UNFC and UNRMS and their role in addressing these challenges and promoting sustainable management of CRMs.

  • Moderator: Charlotte Griffiths, UNECE
  • Simon Michaux, Geological Survey of Finland – Critical Raw Materials and Climate Change: A Global Perspective
  • Tom Bide, British Geological Survey – UNFC – A Blueprint for Managing Critical Raw Materials Sustainably
  • Patrick Wäger, Empa: Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology – Anthropogenic resources: Applying UNFC in the FutuRaM project: the case of vehicle embedded electronics.
  • Hari Tulsidas, UNECE – Corporation vs Competition in the management of Critical Raw Materials: Addressing the ESG challenges through a UNRMS-based global CRM dashboard.
  • Q&A, Discussions

Part II: UNFC and UNRMS in Action: Best Practices and Case Studies

15 February, 13:30 – 15:30

Implementation of UNFC and UNRMS in managing critical raw materials, including best practices, case studies, and practical examples to promote sustainable management of CRMs in different contexts.

  • Moderator: Hari Tulsidas, UNECE
  • Paul Ekins, UCL Institute for Sustainable Resources, International Resource Panel’s Minerals Governance report
  • Frances Wall, Eva Marquis, Exeter University: Critical Resource Management using UNRMS in UK: Best Practices and Lessons Learned
  • Luminita Grancea, TradeTech – Net zero and energy security – uranium also matters
  • Akansha Tyagi, Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW), India – Critical Raw Materials Management: Challenges and Opportunities in India
  • Roland Gauss, EIT Raw materials  – Sourcing of CRMs: European Perspective.
  • Q&A, Discussions.

The critical issues currently facing our planet, such as the climate emergency, extreme weather, food, water, and geopolitical conflicts, are interconnected and reinforce one another as a poly-crisis. The availability of critical raw materials (CRMs) underpins a total transition to low-carbon sustainable energy, transport and digital economy. CRMs are important because they are essential to the functioning of modern economies but have limited availability and high environmental impacts.

Food and water crises are also linked to the management of CRMs. The increasing demand for water in mining and extracting raw materials can exacerbate water scarcity, particularly in regions already facing water shortages. Additionally, converting land to mine raw materials can lead to food insecurity and displacement of local communities.

Concentrating CRMs in certain regions can lead to competition and conflicts over access to these resources. The control and ownership of CRMs can be used for geopolitical influence and power. Therefore, managing critical raw materials is a complex and multifaceted issue linked to a range of issues and requires a holistic and integrated approach that considers the interconnectedness of these issues and promotes sustainable resource management.

The United Nations Framework Classification for Resources (UNFC) and the United Nations Resource Management System (UNRMS) can be valuable tools to support companies in identifying, classifying and managing their resources and developing a better understanding of their environmental and social impacts, which can help them to set targets, track progress, and identify opportunities for improvement.

The workshop will discuss how UNFC and UNRMS can be used to promote the sustainable management of CRMs. The workshop will explore the system challenges associated with transitioning to renewable energy, hydrogen and battery-based low-carbon economy and how UNFC and UNRMS can support this transition, specifically concerning CRMs. The major objectives of the workshops will be to:

  1. Examine UNFC and UNRMS as the transition pathway towards a sustainable future, specifically focusing on managing CRMs.
  2. Increase knowledge and understanding of the challenges and opportunities associated with the sustainable management of CRMs.
  3. Explore a systems approach to CRM management by addressing the interconnectedness to renewable, battery and hydrogen economies.
  4. Exchange ideas and best practices for using UNFC and UNRMS to promote sustainable management of CRMs.

Present case studies on the application of UNFC and UNRMS in the management of CRMs.