A Critical Inclusion in Canada
By Dan Markham
on Jan 3, 2023
Red metals industry participants should be advising our federal leaders to look north for inspiration.
In 2021, executives from the Copper Development Association lamented the absence of copper from the list of critical minerals produced by the United States Geological Survey. Its absence will hinder the ability of the industry to expedite extraction, refining and production of the material. This despite copper’s important role in many key U.S. manufacturing operations, including energy production and distribution.
In December, the Canadian government released its Critical Minerals Strategy, which includes 31 separate “critical minerals.” Copper was among them, joining aluminum, titanium and tin among industrial metals. But the Canadian list went one step further, isolating six minerals for their potential to spur Canadian economic growth and their importance in crucial supply chains. Lithium, graphite, nickel, cobalt and rare earth elements were joined on this Power 6 list by copper.
“Critical minerals are the building blocks for the green and digital economy. They are used in a wide range of essential products, from mobile phones to solar panels, electric vehicle batteries to medical and healthcare devices, to military and national defense applications. Without critical minerals, there can be no green energy transition for Canada and the world,” the Canadian report said, words that sounded eerily similar to what CDA President Andy Kireta Jr. told MCN last year.