MONTREAL — Canada and other G7 countries have formed a new alliance to compel mining companies to adopt more environmentally sustainable and socially responsible standards, as the Western world ramps up its critical mineral supply chains.
Natural Resources Minister Jonathan Wilkinson announced the agreement on Monday at the COP15 biodiversity talks in Montreal. The deal involves countries that are trying to reduce China’s dominance in the critical mineral field.
Critical minerals refer to about three dozen metals and minerals needed for most modern technology, including laptops and cellphones. But they are also essential to rechargeable batteries used in electric vehicles, as well as energy storage, and renewable energy production in solar panels and wind turbines.
“There is no energy transition without critical minerals,” Wilkinson told reporters. “Critical minerals are the building blocks for the green and digital economy.” The announcement came three days after Wilkinson published Canada’s critical mineral strategy, which aims to expand Canada’s production in a way that is environmentally sustainable, ensures Indigenous equity and improves global security.