Circular economy – rare earths and industrial metals

The transition to a decarbonized economy is increasing the demand for rare earths and industrial metals. Securing a sustainable supply of raw materials is therefore essential for the successful transformation of Germany as an innovative industrial location.
As Germany and the EU are heavily dependent on individual countries for the extraction and processing of rare earths and industrial metals, effectively recovering them and closing raw material cycles is a key challenge. This expert forum focused on the barriers that need to be overcome for a cross-sector circular economy.

Together with representatives from politics, science and industry, the expert forum discussed which political framework conditions could lead to more effective recovery of rare earths and industrial metals. Input from Dr. Michael Weltzin, Division IVB1 Mineral Raw Materials, Circular Economy, Technical Supervision BGR of the Federal Ministry of Economics and Climate Protection (BMWK), Dr. Lukas Gast, Team Leader Circular Economy at the Institute for the Future of Industrial Society (INZIN), and Dr. Britta Bookhagen, Head of the Recycling Raw Materials Department at the German Mineral Resources Agency (DERA), contributed to a successful event.