Proposed measures for the alleviation of these risks are also presented.
We find that current assessments of raw material criticality are fundamentally flawed in several ways.
This issue is particularly pressing due to its close link with the renewable energy transition, requiring more metal and mineral raw materials per unit energy produced.
The solution to this problem will require coordinated policy action, as well as the collaboration of scientists from many different fields—with physics, as well as the materials and earth sciences in the lead.
Criticality is therefore by no means an inherent property of a material itself, although the similarity of the term to the criticality concept in the physical sciences, where it generally refers to systems near a transformation of state, might at first suggest such a relationship (see Bradshaw The most common procedure for criticality assessments is to compile sets of different indicators into aggregate scores for both the supply risk and vulnerability dimensions, and then plot them against each other to delimit the field of critical raw materials. This approach is an abstraction from the classical risk matrix (see Glöser 2015), and was originally introduced by the National Research Council (NRC 2007).
As mentioned above, some studies merely use a single final dimension (e.g.
In recent years, concerns about supply security have led to a resurgence of interest in mineral and metal availability, particularly in highly import-dependent industrialised countries such as Germany, Japan, and the United States.