For mineral-rich Philippines, green metals rush is a balancing act

(Context, 25 Mar 2024) With demand for metals used in clean energy soaring, Filipino campaigners say mining laws must protect nature and Indigenous lands.

As the Philippines works to ramp up mining to meet global demand for metals crucial to the green energy transition, environmental groups are demanding strict limits to protect nature and Indigenous lands.

The Philippines has the world's fourth-largest copper reserves, fifth-biggest nickel deposits and is also rich in cobalt - all of which have important uses in clean energy technologies, from lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles (EVs) to solar panels.

Mineral requirements for renewable energy technologies must be quadrupled by 2040 to reach the goals of the Paris Agreement, and the World Bank estimates a 500% increase in the demand for transition minerals. 

That is encouraging mineral-rich countries like the Philippines, where mining is relatively undeveloped and only accounts for 1% of gross domestic product (GDP), to boost their production of so-called critical minerals.

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Context, 25 May 2024: For mineral-rich Philippines, green metals rush is a balancing act