by ERP Italia

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A new report by the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre investigates recovering critical and other raw materials from mining waste and landfill and highlights the huge potential in this area.

Build on European Commission’s Circular Economy “Sharing of best practice for the recovery of critical raw materials from mining waste and landfills” discussion held in 2018, the report shows technological innovations that have led to a more comprehensive knowledge base for raw materials.

The enhance of large-scale deployment of recovery processes is becoming increasingly urgent. The report presents good practices and challenges to be overcome.

Recovering Raw Materials is good for the environment

Raw materials permeate our daily lives and are essential to industry. However, many are characterised by high risks of supply disruption, such as cobalt, niobium, rare earths, tantalum and vanadium. However, many of them can be found in the waste produced from mining activities, as well as from landfills across the EU. This process is good for increasing the sustainability of mining activities and for contributing to a more circular economy.

Examples are rare but successful. However, recovery of raw materials from waste is not yet a common practice in the EU.  Recovery of raw materials from extractive and industrial waste is more advanced and a more promising area to develop. It can help to facilitate industrial growth, trade, security of supply, and sustainability.

If you want to read the JRC Report click here.