UCL Institute for Sustainable Resources


Responsible mining for critical minerals for the energy transition

27 April 2023, 5:30 pm–7:30 pm

Drone over quarry in Barossa Valley, SA, Australia

Join us for an event discussing the impact of mining for critical minerals and the need for responsible mining to support the energy transition.

Event Information

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UCL Institute for Sustainable Resources


Room 225
Central House
14 Upper Woburn Place
United Kingdom

It is now well understood that the clean energy transition will need large quantities of metals and minerals, such as lithium, nickel and cobalt, that have so far not been greatly used – collectively called ‘critical minerals’. If they are to be available as and when required there will need to be huge investment in new mines, and if these mines are to be welcomed, rather than blocked, by the local communities where they are located, the mining will have to be carried out with sensitivity to the needs and aspirations of the communities and countries in which they are to be located, and with minimal environmental impacts in operation, and full environmental restoration following mine closure. In short, ‘responsible mining’ will need to become the rule.

This seminar will explore these issues with two expert and experienced speakers, Patrice Christmann, former Deputy Director of the French Geological Survey and a former member of UNEP’s International Resource Panel, and Javiera Martinez, the Latin American Coordinator of the London Mining Network. Patrice will discuss the need for critical minerals for the energy transition and some of the problems of ensuring that they are forthcoming in the right quantity at the right time. Javiera will discuss her experiences of mining in Latin America, and what it would take for communities there to welcome new mines in their area.

Event details

About the Speakers

Patrice Christmann

Patrice Christmann, PhD, MBA, is a self-employed researcher, and Honorary Professor at UCL. He is specialised in geosciences, minerals and metals economics and policies. He retired in 2016 from BRGM, the French Geological Survey, which he served for 40 years. He was a member of the UN International Resource Panel from 2011-2020, and is currently an Honorary Professor at UCL ISR.

Javiera Martínez

Javiera Martínez is a Civil Constructor of the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile and got a Master of Human Rights Law at SOAS University of London. She is currently the Latin American Coordinator of the London Mining Network where she works with communities and indigenous peoples affected by the extractive impact of London mining companies.