Are our efforts for renewable energy really helping?

This post was written by a student. It has not been fact checked or edited.


As the demand for electric cars is increasing, it's slowly capturing the market of commercial cars. Globally the market share for EV Vehicles has reached over 14 % in 2022 compared to 9% in 2021. Electric Cars are going to be fabulous with new technology going into them such as AI and all fancy features!

The lithium-ion batteries which are installed in EV Vehicles use five major minerals to operate which are graphite, cobalt, lithium, manganese, and nickel. Half of the world's cobalt originates from the Democratic Republic of Congo, China produces the most Graphite, South Africa produces the most manganese, Australia is the biggest supplier of lithium, and Indonesia is the biggest producer of Nickel. Most of these countries have large forest areas rich in resources and biodiversity.

But we need to extract these minerals which mostly originate from forested areas. That's where the problems arise. We are so busy extracting these minerals that we are forgetting they support climate change. To meet the demand for critical strategic minerals we will need 3 billion tons of them by 2050.

It's not just the case for EV Vehicles. West African Forests are being felled for wood pellets to heat green homes in Europe and Indonesian Rainforests are being felled for Palm Oil Plantations for producing biofuels. Why are we not paying attention to the small things which compose our luxuries that can change the world forever we live in?

We are also supporting the rapid growth of child labor too. This can be observed in the Democratic Republic of Congo where no protection is being provided from toxic air and waste which occurs during mining. This is affecting the health of people.

We need to tackle these problems before going ahead with our future plans for renewable energy or we will fail completely and create more problems in the future.

Comments (17)

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  • It's sad to hear that child labor is still a prevalent issue in some parts of the world, and even more concerning that this exploitation is being linked to the production of renewable energy sources. We must make sure that we're not simply swapping one problem for another.

    We need to ensure that the production of renewable energy is done sustainably, without harming the health and wellbeing of workers or the environment. This might require increased government regulations, better worker protections, and more investment in research and development to find safer and cleaner ways to produce out planet .Together, we can work towards a brighter, cleaner, and more just future for everyone.

  • Wow, I had no idea that electric cars were becoming so popular! It's really exciting to think about all the cool new technology that's going into them. But did you know that these cars rely on five different minerals just to work? Graphite, cobalt, lithium, manganese, and nickel are all used in the batteries that power electric vehicles.

    I wonder where all these minerals come from and how they're mined? And what happens when the batteries eventually wear out and need to be disposed of? It's important to think about these things as we move towards a more sustainable future. Maybe someday we'll find even better ways to power our cars that don't rely on rare minerals at all!

  • Yes, of course, it is very useful because it helps reduce carbon footprints, so we help reduce climate change. It is a really good thing. I hope to increase the use of things that reduce carbon footprints that reduce climate change, so we can walk on foot in order to reduce the use of means of transportation and reduce footprints Carbon dioxide is driving climate change.

  • Firstly:
    I agree with you that we must take care and realize our luxuries, which can change the world in which we live. Trees are the basis of oxygen and air, and had it not been for God’s power and mercy upon us, he would not have made trees of great importance. What is between the importance of taking care of them, as they are the ones that manufacture and renew oxygen for us after absorbing carbon dioxide gas What comes out from humans and various creatures, if it weren’t for the trees, carbon dioxide gas would be dominating our planet, and for the reason of this suffocation for most people, which leads to an increase in the death rate, and this is a great crisis and a problem for humanity as a whole. They do not have any sense of responsibility towards nature and do not know what it contains of great benefits for them and how it protects them and helps them to live, It is our duty to plant and plant the seeds of trees, support their growth and preserve them, and reduce the possibility of cutting them down, because without trees, our planet would not be beautiful and decorated with the most beautiful colors, and also one of the benefits of trees is that they maintain the balance of the environment. We spread awareness about the importance of trees, we care about them, and we teach our future generations about their importance, because we, as fathers and mothers of the future, children follow the example of their parents and follow their path and footsteps.
    secondly :
    As a school student and a citizen, I do not support child labor, forcing them to be blind at an early age, and their roaming in the streets to sell products. In my opinion, it is wrong and improper to make children work. In my country, there are child laborers, but they work because of their poverty and needs, and they do not have anyone to help them and help them in their lives. Also, by making children work at a young age, some other children may think that they have to work at a young age, and this negatively affects their lives , because every child has the right to enjoy a happy and carefree childhood and live the experience of childhood, Because it is one of the most beautiful stages of life, just as the life that goes away does not come back, and this will affect the dissolution of their children after them, so we must cooperate to reduce child labor by helping them with their needs and providing them with education because they consider the future generations and they are the ones who carry the nation after us and will raise it .

  • Amazing standpoint trusting_theory you are taking about the most spoken solution for climate change but from the negative side of it.History has thought us one thing that is taking risks and accepting changes even if it has very small impact so instead of just stiking on to an ordinary car which uses much non-renewable resources we could just use a vehicle which uses less renewable resources like the electric car which you have mentioned then gradually update it in a way it is completely eco-friendly and change doesn't occur easily we need to take so many steps so we could consider this as another step taken by humanity trying to pay for the past mistakes done by them.

  • That's a really good point! It's crazy to think that the small things we use every day can have such a big impact on the world around us. I think a lot of times we just don't realize how our choices affect the environment and other people.

    But it's not just about feeling guilty or bad for using certain products. We should also think about what we can do to make a difference. Maybe we can try to use more eco-friendly products, like reusable water bottles or cloth bags instead of plastic ones. Or we can support companies that are committed to sustainability and protecting the planet.

    It might seem like a small thing, but if enough people start making these little changes, it could add up to something really big. And who knows, maybe someday we'll look back and be proud of the role we played in making the world a better place.

    1. Firstly, I would like to say, Such a nice approach you have there for your comment. And I strongly feel you are right due to the fact that there's a saying which says every single thing we do that might think don't matter enough may even be a great contribution to something great later on in life. Like what you made mention of "Using eco-friendly products". Do you mind giving some examples of some products and how we could possibly identify them. But I thought about it and said "What about some industries that manufactures toxic substance that are not really eco-friendly as you mentioned".
      You Help Save Nature. Over-exploitation, pollution, and destruction of natural resources can cause an imbalance in nature. ...
      Save Mankind in the aspect of consumption of products on skin, even its usages in industries and so on
      Better Climate.
      A Healthier Life.
      Cost-Effective and many other advantages/benefits we might think of

    2. Yes, you are very right....... Every little thing around us we feel is a simple thing that has no value, but why, as we believe, is it so vague in the world without value, unless we neglect it, then it is without value....... and I hit You are an example of the plastic water bottles that we all throw in the trash....We thought a little bit that we can benefit from it by doing things that beautify the environment around us..and make it more beautiful and sweeter....and we also have to use things that have more than one use in our daily lives, and I assure you that everything that seems small to you has a beautiful effect in this world .....

  • Generating renewable energy creates far lower emissions than burning fossil fuels. Transitioning from fossil fuels, which currently account for the lion's share of emissions, to renewable energy is key to addressing the climate crisis.
    Derived from natural resources that are abundant and continuously replenished, renewable energy is key to a safer, cleaner, and sustainable world. Explore common sources of renewable energy here.
    Solar, wind, hydroelectric, biomass, and geothermal power can provide energy without the planet-warming effects of fossil fuels. In any discussion about climate change, renewable energy usually tops the list of changes the world can implement to stave off the worst effects of rising temperatures.
    Benefits of Renewable Energy
    Generating energy that produces no greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels and reduces some types of air pollution. Diversifying energy supply and reducing dependence on imported fuels.
    But still, why can't renewables save the planet?
    Firstly, wind turbines are one of the biggest threats to birds of prey and migratory bird species. Secondly, it is estimated that about 6000 birds die every year by catching on fire above solar farms. Thirdly, renewable energy projects require large scale land clearing.
    Renewable energy is unreliable and thus ends up being worse for the environment. Solar and wind only generate electricity about 10–30% of the time during most of the year. So then you need to fill in those gaps by burning fossil fuels. This is because nuclear power plants cannot be ramped up and down quickly.

  • I find your stand point very interesting but I would like to ask, how do you suggest one could get electric cars or the easy use of renewable energy to rural areas? I would be very interested to see what you have to comment.

    1. Well, there should be good roads in proper condition with proper operating traffic signals and signs for the current Electric cars in fashion which most rural areas worldwide lack of adequate infrastructure. But most importantly, awareness of these fancy things! Rural areas in most countries are primarily unaware due to a lack of awareness. How can even the electric cars companies work if most of the people in rural areas have no education in driving or a driving license? The price. These cars are too expensive at the moment than commercial vehicles and the rural population will see no need for them and will instead prefer walking to their destination or using commercial vehicles. Even if the companies are desperate to introduce them to the rural areas, then their pockets will become loose in no less time since they will need heavy marketing and heavy cost reductions. Therefore, I think that Electric Cars could fail in rural areas. Renewable energy could be profitable for them in terms of reduction in the cost of farm supplies, houses, and various other things.

      1. I find your answer interesting. I would also like to ask on your suggestion how companies or the government would cope with the cost of making the dream of providing renewable energy everywhere a thing because I for one know that it needs a lot of capital?

        1. I think that the Government or Companies should compare the costs of electricity and the costs of renewable energy because it should benefit the rural community more than the company or the government. If renewable energy costs less than electricity, then they shall take the chance and go for reducing the costs of their products in a way that both parties benefit. In fact, it should become the responsibility of the Government to encourage renewable energy because, in turn, it is going to cost them lesser for the generation of electricity. The Government should explain the importance of these energies to the locals so that they can start using them. But the Government in the future will have to encourage this energy when there will be no raw materials left for generating electricity.

          1. I find your answer very interesting, but I would like would to ask is how the government can convince the locals to the idea of renewable energy? As you know, renewable energy is power generation depending on natural resources which uncontrollable by humans. This simply means that it's biggest disadvantage is that it is intermittent due to the fact that it is not under our control. There are also many disadvantages such as;
            1. The Electricity Generation Capacity is Still Not Large Enough.
            2. Renewable Energy Can be Unreliable.
            3. Low-efficiency Levels.
            4. Requires a Huge Upfront Capital Outlay.
            5. Takes a Lot of Space to Install.
            6. Expensive Storage Costs.
            7. Not Always a Commercially-viable Option.
            8. It Still Generates Pollution.
            With that being said, I would like to ask you how the government would tackle this problem if the locals know of it's side-effects.

            1. I'm not saying that Renewable energy at the moment is able to fully overcome electricity. Electricity is also needed but renewable energy and electricity can divide their work. Both of these methods have their own advantages and disadvantages. But, if we use them in a careful manner, then they both are the best team in the world. They both could be used at Time Intervals alternatively in which the natural sources needed for their generation are not present. The Government should not force the locals to use this form of energy if the locals benefit from electricity. But still, they should explain the personal benefits of using renewable energy in various other places such as farms. Schemes could be offered for the foundation steps of Renewable Energy as for any other tasks the Government offers discounts and offers for. Technology and Regulations in Renewable Energy could be introduced to make it a lot safer and smarter than Electricity.

          2. I agree because... some countries export electricity which earns them income not only as export but also used in factories to manufacture goods. It is used in internet cafe's which creates employment . It helps people to develop talents as they build power dams which earn them income which can be used to develop the economy.

  • Really wonderful, I congratulate you on this beautiful topic. Renewable energy is one of the best solutions by which we can help the planet instead of using electricity and oil to generate energy. But the problem is that solar energy does not last long, especially at night. I think that if we used solar energy during the day and used electricity generated from burning Oil at night, this will be less harmful, because at night we do not use much electricity, so we may use a small amount of light to provide lighting. What is your opinion ?

  • Hey,trusting_theory
    You said, "Why are we not paying attention to the small things which compose our luxuries that can change the world forever we live in?"

    To answer your question, it's often a result of prioritizing immediate benefits and overlooking long-term consequences. People tend to focus on the convenience and advancements brought by new technologies, without fully considering their environmental and social impact.

    Two questions that arise from your standpoint are:

    1. How do you think we can raise awareness and encourage individuals and industries to consider the environmental and social implications of their actions?
    2. What specific actions do you believe should be taken to ensure responsible mineral sourcing and address issues like child labor in the mining industry?

    1. We can raise awareness and encourage individuals to consider the impact of their actions by obviously Education but also by setting positive examples and talking about the feedback from various other communities about their actions and how they are impacting their lives. Industries should be controlled by Rules and Regulations by the Government. Mining Industries generally look for their profits and just overlook the impacts of child labour in underdeveloped countries because they take advantage of the economic and political situations of the country. They also take advantage of the rate of poverty in the country which forces the parents to send their children to do work at a very young age. The Democratic Republic of Congo has 789 LISTED mining companies and there are more illegal mining companies on the open that would probably be using child labour. Actions such as the banning of child labour and the usage of proper safety equipment should be implemented at least which should be managed by the Government or the mining companies.

      1. Hey,trusting_theory
        I completely agree with you on the importance of education and setting positive examples to raise awareness about the impact of our actions. It's crucial to inform individuals about the environmental and social consequences associated with the extraction of minerals and the use of certain products.

        In terms of industries, you're right that government regulations and oversight play a vital role. Governments should establish and enforce strict rules and regulations that prioritize ethical practices and sustainable sourcing of minerals. This would include measures to prevent child labor and ensure the safety and well-being of workers in mining industries.

        Furthermore, international collaboration and agreements can help address these issues on a global scale. Governments, mining companies, and other stakeholders should work together to create responsible mineral sourcing standards and ensure their enforcement. This could involve certifications or labels that guarantee ethical and sustainable practices throughout the supply chain.

        Additionally, consumers can also play a significant role by making informed choices and supporting companies that prioritize responsible mineral sourcing and labor practices. By demanding transparency and ethical standards from the products they purchase, consumers can influence companies to adopt more sustainable practices.

        Ultimately, it requires a multi-faceted approach involving education, government regulations, industry accountability, and conscious consumer choices to address the challenges related to mineral extraction, child labor, and environmental impact. Together, we can work towards a future where renewable energy and technological advancements go hand in hand with ethical and sustainable practices.

  • Your standpoint got me thinking..... is there a way for us to save the planet without giving up somthing in the process?. Well according to what you said, most of the materials used in making the battery which an electric car runs on are minerals. And to get these minerals, forests have to be destroyed. But electric cars will help reduce harmful car emissions a lot. Is there a way we can settle both of these issues? When a building is to be built in Singapore, the amount of vegetation that was cut down has to be replanted again once the building is completed. The reason why i said this is because it might just be the solution we need. Electric cars will help stop air pollution a lot but we need to cut down trees in the process. So they can cut down the trees, extract the minerals and plant new trees. This will make up for all the vegetation lost and it will also help in the manufacturing of electrical cars which can go a long way in battling climate change.

  • According to the World Health Organization (WHO), about 99 percent of people in the world breathe air that exceeds air quality limits and threatens their health, and more than 13 million deaths around the world each year are due to avoidable environmental causes, including air pollution. The unhealthy levels of fine particulate matter and nitrogen dioxide originate mainly from the burning of fossil fuels. In 2018, air pollution from fossil fuels caused $2.9 trillion in health and economic costs, about $8 billion a day. Switching to clean sources of energy, such as wind and solar, thus helps address not only climate change but also air pollution and health.

    1. A great point to raise about Air Quality, in the UK we have generally good air quality. In London the Mayor is trying to widen the implementation of a Low Emissions Zone which means older cars and vans which are polluting above a set standard have to pay a daily charge to enter the zone. This has caused a large amount of protests, why do you think this and how can we encourage people to make smarter choices in a time of increasing daily costs? I would love to hear your view!

      1. Wow a great and smart move from your mayor. This will help in reducing the amount of pollutant cars as I like to call it. People fail to understand the importance of electric cars as one of the major moves steps to curbing climate change. I actually do not see a reason for the protests in your area. I think it is as a result of ignorance. At first, electric cars might seem expensive but over time, a user will realize that the cost of fueling the car on a constant will outweigh all the costs of electric cars. To solve the climate crisis, we need to make the vehicles on our roads as clean as possible. We have only a decade left to change the way we use energy to avoid the worst impacts of climate change. Emissions from cars and trucks are not only bad for our planet, they’re bad for our health. Air pollutants from gasoline- and diesel-powered vehicles cause asthma, bronchitis, cancer, and premature death.
        The health impacts of localized air pollution last a lifetime, with the effects borne out in asthma attacks, lung damage, and heart conditions. I can agree that In the manufacturing process, electric vehicles will produce more global warming emissions than the average gasoline vehicle, because electric cars’ large lithium-ion batteries require a lot of materials and energy to build. (For example, manufacturing a mid-sized electric car with an 84-mile range, results in 15% more emissions.) However, once the vehicles get on the road, it’s a whole different energy story. Electric vehicles make up for their higher manufacturing emissions within, at most, 18 months of driving — and continue to outperform gasoline cars until the end of their lives

      2. The implementation of a Low Emissions Zone (LEZ) in London and similar measures in other cities often face resistance and protests for several reasons:

        Financial burden: The daily charge imposed on older, more polluting vehicles entering the zone can be seen as an additional financial burden for individuals who rely on such vehicles. This can lead to opposition from those who may not have the means to switch to cleaner alternatives.

        Lack of alternatives: Some people may feel that they don't have viable alternatives to using their older vehicles, especially if public transportation options are limited or inefficient in their area. In such cases, the LEZ can be perceived as unfairly targeting certain individuals or groups.
        Transition challenges: Transitioning to cleaner alternatives, such as electric vehicles, can be expensive and may require significant changes to infrastructure and charging facilities. This can create concerns about the feasibility and accessibility of cleaner options, leading to resistance against the LEZ.

        To encourage people to make smarter choices in a time of increasing daily costs, it's important to address these concerns and provide viable solutions. people have to follow some approaches:

        Financial incentives: Offer financial incentives or subsidies to help individuals and businesses transition to cleaner vehicles. This can help alleviate the financial burden and make cleaner alternatives more accessible.

        Improve public transportation: Invest in and improve public transportation infrastructure to provide reliable, affordable, and efficient alternatives to driving older, more polluting vehicles. Enhancing public transportation can make it a more attractive choice for daily commuting.

        Increase awareness and education: Launch public awareness campaigns to educate people about the importance of air quality, the impact of vehicle emissions on health and the environment, and the benefits of using cleaner alternatives. This can help change attitudes and encourage behavioral change.

        Expand charging infrastructure: Invest in the development of electric vehicle charging infrastructure to address concerns about the feasibility of electric vehicles. Expanding the availability of charging stations can help alleviate range anxiety and make electric vehicles a more viable option.

        Collaborate with stakeholders: Involve various stakeholders, including community groups, businesses, and local authorities, in the decision-making process. Engage in dialogue and seek input to address concerns and ensure that the measures implemented are fair and effective.

        By taking these approaches, it is possible to encourage people to make smarter choices while minimizing the resistance and protests associated with the implementation of measures like Low Emissions Zones.

  • Our efforts for renewable energy are going horribly . The problem is where will we find the space to build all these
    solar panels , wind turbines and water turbine ? We could be waiting years to replace every car to a electric one . Where are we going to get all the metal to make these renewable generators . The metal we use and melt release gases and use a ton of energy but if we can successfully do this and not make the planet to hot in the process . And will be able to make special farms with plants that take in the most carbon to do photosynthesis and make oxygen this will be the only chance to save us except for evolution .

    1. Where do you think we should put all these solar panels? There are many roofs in the UK capable of housing solar panels for energy.

      1. Expanding the use of solar panels on roofs is a great idea to promote renewable energy in the UK. There are some potential locations where solar panels could be installed:

        Residential buildings: Many houses and residential buildings in the UK have suitable roof spaces for installing solar panels. Encouraging homeowners to adopt solar power by providing incentives and raising awareness about the benefits can help increase the number of residential solar installations.

        Commercial and industrial buildings: Large rooftops of commercial and industrial buildings offer ample space for solar panel installations. Encouraging businesses to adopt solar energy through incentives, tax benefits, and grants can drive the deployment of solar panels in these areas.

        Public buildings: Government-owned buildings, schools, hospitals, and community centers are potential sites for solar panels. The government can lead by example and promote solar installations on public buildings, showcasing the benefits of renewable energy.

        Car parks and parking lots: Covered parking areas can be utilized for solar panel installations. This approach provides dual benefits by generating clean energy and providing shade for parked vehicles.

        Agricultural buildings: Farm buildings, barns, and agricultural structures often have large roof areas that can accommodate solar panels. Promoting solar energy in the agricultural sector can contribute to sustainable farming practices and reduce carbon footprints.

        Infrastructure projects: Incorporating solar panels into infrastructure projects like railway stations, bus depots, and highway structures can utilize available space efficiently and generate renewable energy to power these facilities.

        Community solar projects: Implementing community solar projects allows multiple households or community organizations to collectively invest in and benefit from solar energy. This approach is particularly useful for areas where individual roof installations may not be feasible or cost-effective.

        It's worth noting that the suitability of each location will depend on factors such as roof orientation, shading, structural capacity, and local regulations. Conducting feasibility studies, providing financial incentives, and streamlining administrative processes can help accelerate the adoption of solar panels on rooftops across the UK.

  • I agree because we say were helping the environment with these fancy new electronic cars, but in reality the making of it s wore. More carbon emissions and ruining the environment by trying to make "eco-friendly" cars that aren't eco friendly at all. Were using innocent children to do our work for us and its a big issue that we need to take car of. A lot of brands like Shein, Nike, Adidas, Nestle etc. use children for their work, but there big brands and make lots of money, so people don't realize or they do but the products are so good that it "makes up for it".
    People should buy more from eco-friendly brands like Lush, The Body Shop Burts Bees, Shea Moisture but there more expensive so not many people can buy from there frequently. There's so many issues with climate change and we cant stop it but we can reduce it in many ways, like using more renewable energy sources, control how much energy we use and to buy from more eco-friendly brands.

    1. Some good points made! We have learned about Greenwashing through this programme which many brands are accused of. How should I as a consumer make educated choices about where to buy items from in order to be more sustainable?

  • it is alright saying that we need to do more to support the uptake on renewable energy however were are we going to put all these wind turbines and solar pannels because we are going to have to cut down trees to make rooms

    1. I think there is plenty of space for example every building could house solar panels. The problem I see is a difference between short term and long term benefits VS cost. Renewables have a large up-front cost and the benefits are received over the long term whereas Fossil fuels do not have this long term investment because the systems are already present to generate electricity. What do you think about my counter argument?

      1. Your counter argument raises an important point about the cost dynamics between renewable energy sources, such as solar panels, and fossil fuels. Here are some considerations to address the difference between short-term costs and long-term benefits:

        Life cycle cost analysis: When comparing renewable energy systems, like solar panels, with fossil fuel-based systems, it's essential to consider the life cycle cost analysis. This analysis takes into account not only the initial investment but also the operating and maintenance costs, fuel costs, and potential environmental and health impacts over the entire lifespan of the system. In many cases, renewable energy systems, despite the higher upfront costs, can provide cost savings and greater long-term benefits.

        Falling renewable energy costs: The cost of renewable energy technologies, including solar panels, has been declining over the years. Advances in technology, economies of scale, and supportive policies have contributed to the reduction in costs. As the cost of renewables continues to decrease, the economic viability and competitiveness of these technologies improve, making them more attractive in the long run.

        Financial incentives and support: Governments and organizations can provide financial incentives, grants, tax credits, and subsidies to promote the adoption of renewable energy systems. These incentives help offset the initial investment costs and make renewable energy more economically feasible, encouraging individuals and businesses to choose cleaner alternatives.

        Energy market transition: Transitioning from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources requires a systemic shift in the energy market. By gradually phasing out subsidies and externalizing the costs associated with fossil fuel use (e.g., environmental damage and healthcare costs), the economic advantage of renewable energy becomes more apparent. Governments can play a crucial role in creating a level playing field and supporting the transition to a sustainable energy future.

        External benefits: It's important to consider the broader benefits of renewable energy beyond financial returns. Renewable energy sources, such as solar power, contribute to reduced greenhouse gas emissions, improved air quality, energy independence, and job creation in the clean energy sector. These long-term benefits have positive environmental, social, and economic implications that are often not captured solely by short-term cost considerations.

        By considering these factors and adopting a long-term perspective, the benefits of renewable energy systems like solar panels can outweigh the initial costs, leading to a more sustainable and resilient energy infrastructure. It requires a shift in mindset and a recognition of the value of investing in cleaner, renewable technologies for the future.

  • It is helping in a way because with the help of renewable energy that produce bio items like bio gas and make the environment clean
    benefits of bio gas
    1 It's a Clean & Renewable Energy Source.
    2. It Reduces Soil & Water Pollution.
    3. Prevents Health Problems & Biodiversity Loss.
    4. Generates Organic Fertilizer which help plants more.
    5. It's simple and it doesnt cost much. It is a technology that accepts a circular economy

    In general bio gas is healthier

  • You raise important concerns about the environmental and social impacts associated with the extraction of minerals needed for electric vehicles (EVs) and other renewable energy technologies. It is crucial to consider the sustainability and ethical implications of the resources we rely on for our luxuries and future plans.

    The extraction of minerals, such as graphite, cobalt, lithium, manganese, and nickel, often takes place in forested areas with rich biodiversity. Deforestation and habitat destruction can have severe consequences for climate change, as forests play a crucial role in carbon sequestration and maintaining ecological balance. Additionally, the mining process itself can contribute to pollution and the release of harmful substances, impacting both the environment and human health.

    Furthermore, the demand for these minerals can lead to social challenges, including the issue of child labor. In regions like the Democratic Republic of Congo, where many of these minerals are sourced, the lack of regulations and oversight can result in hazardous working conditions, exploitation of laborers, and the violation of human rights.

    To address these problems, a comprehensive approach is necessary. It involves promoting responsible and sustainable mining practices that minimize environmental impact and prioritize the well-being of local communities. This includes implementing strict regulations, enforcing labor rights, and ensuring transparency and accountability throughout the supply chain.

    Efforts are being made to address these issues. For example, initiatives like the Global Battery Alliance aim to create a sustainable and responsible battery value chain, focusing on ethical sourcing, environmental standards, and human rights. Furthermore, research and development are ongoing to explore alternative materials and technologies that reduce reliance on these critical minerals.

    It is important for governments, industries, and consumers to recognize the importance of responsible sourcing and sustainable practices in the production of renewable energy technologies. By doing so, we can mitigate the negative impacts associated with mineral extraction and ensure that our transition to a renewable energy future is truly sustainable, both environmentally and socially.