A response to the Raw Materials Initiative

October 2009

This declaration constitutes a response from the European extractive industry, governmental institutions, geological surveys and academia across Europe. It emphasizes the responsibility in terms of future needs for a common agenda concerning research and higher education related to a sustainable supply of metallic and non-metallic raw materials.

We believe that:

• A future society without minerals and metals is unthinkable.

• The global growth of population and of the world economy demands a strong emphasis on securing future mineral supply.

• There is a great potential for sustainable supply of raw materials from EU resources, but we need access to land, an improved knowledge base and R&D to improve methods for exploration, extraction and recycling.

• European companies are highly competitive and (high-tech) technology providers for the world. It is important that the mineral sector is recognized in the EU land access planning and in the EU R&D programs for maintaining this leadership. The development of a pan-European “Europe beneath our feet” knowledge base on the geology and mineral resources needs to be supported jointly by the European Commission and the Member States.

• The future mineral supply is a grand challenge for society at large. The extractive industry, academia and geological surveys are committed to contribute to sustainable mineral supply and meeting future challenges by excellent R&D. Improved transparency and simplifications are necessary in the mechanisms and administrative procedures governing EU-funded research.

• A sustainable supply of minerals and metals needs to be eco-efficient. This can be achieved by improved resource and energy efficiency and by increased use of secondary raw materials.

The appendix describes the way forward.

The organisations present at the Conference on sustainable mineral resources within EU: European higher education and research on metallic and mineral raw materials, listed below, agreed on the declaration.

Universities                                                   Organisations and Institutes                  Industry

INPL, Nancy                                               Centek                                               Atlas Copco
Luleå University of Technology                     Euromines                                          Boliden AB

RWTH, Aachen                                           Georange                                           Destia Ltd

University of Leoben                                     MinFo                                               KGHM
University of Oulu                                         Mintek                                               LKAB
University of Oslo                                         MIROLappland                                 Goldminers AB
                                                                    MITU                                                Outotec Oyj
Geological Surveys                                       North Sweden European Office          Raw Materials Group
IGME                                                          ProMine                                             RHI
Geological Survey of Sweden                       Inst. Mech. Constr. & Rock             Nordic Rock Tech Centre
Geological Survey of Finland                        Sveriges Bergmaterialindustri            BRGM      
Geological Survey of Norway

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