Global demand for minerals and metals is rising at an incredible rate, fuelled by expanding industries, technological innovations and a growing population.
As a global leader in mining, Canada has a crucial role to play in meeting the world’s mineral and metal needs. And, with resource security concerns brought into the limelight in recent years, that role is only increasing as our closest allies and trade partners increasingly look to Canada for its wealth of natural resources.
Boasting a diverse range of minerals and metals, Canada is a stable, reliable and environmentally conscious supplier of mining products that can contribute significantly to global supply.
Here are five big reasons why the world needs more Canadian mining – and why our country should be doing everything it can to extract these critical resources expeditiously. Also see:
#1. Supplementing Growing Technological Needs
Canada is ideally positioned to supply global markets with the critical minerals needed to manufacture a full spectrum of technologies.
The world’s ninth-largest economy is home to various minerals like copper, nickel, cobalt, lithium, graphite, platinum group metals and rare earth elements – all vital components in products like electric vehicle batteries, wind turbines and solar panels.1
Unleashing more Canadian mining products onto global markets can help mitigate dependency on less reliable and environmentally friendly sources while helping drive the development of these technologies worldwide.
#2. Strong Environmental Track Record
Canada's minerals sector is steadfastly committed to operating in an environmentally responsible way. The country’s commitment to sustainable mining practices is exemplified by various initiatives, such as:
- Green Mining Initiative
- Towards Sustainable Mining Initiative
The Green Mining Initiative led by Canada's Natural Resources Department aims to improve the sector's environmental performance, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and promote advances in green technologies.1
Combined with Canada’s Towards Sustainable Mining initiative – now adopted by other mining countries abroad for its world-class guidelines on sustainably developing minerals and metals using best practices – more Canadian minerals on global markets truly is a win-win for the well-being of local communities and the global environment.
Consequently, promoting more Canadian minerals and metals supply on international markets means contributing to global environmental conservation and protecting human rights in communities directly impacted by operations.
#3. Strengthen Canada's Economy
Canada’s position as a top-five global mining country shows how critical the sector is for Canadian prosperity.3 More responsibly produced Canadian minerals and metals on global markets can continue to help underpin its economy.
Canadian mineral production supported 665,000 jobs and reached $55.5 billion in 2021, showcasing its economic significance.2
Expanding these mining operations both at home and abroad can create new jobs, stimulate economic growth, and enhance the resilience of global supply chains – especially given the significant projected demand growth of various critical minerals and metals in Canada such as gold, copper, lithium and graphite.4
#4. Stable, Reliable Supply Chains
The Canadian mining sector is a stable and reliable source of critical minerals for global markets – and it can do more by expediting the development of more mines in a responsible manner. Since 2005, only four new critical mines have opened in Canada, a cause for concern given the developed world’s lofty electric vehicle and renewable electricity goals.
Canada’s role in mining markets is increasingly important today than ever before with rising global geopolitical tensions potentially leading to disrupted mineral supply chains, especially for critical elements like rare earths.
Mining is active in every province and territory of Canada; therefore, it can deliver a geographically diverse and secure source of minerals and metals vital for technology, defence, and energy applications.2
#5. Advancing Technology and Innovation
Canadian minerals and metals are crucial for technological advancements and innovation.
For instance, Canada is a popular source of potash, essential for agriculture, and metals like copper and nickel, essential for electronic and communication devices, as well as wind, solar and electric vehicle technologies.
In the era of digitization and growing demand for sustainable development, sourcing more minerals and metals from Canada can drive the advancement of multiple industries. 2
I Love Canadian Mining!
Canadian mining families work hard to provide us with the critical minerals and metals we need to manufacture countless products ranging from computers and smartphones to airplanes and vehicles.
It is hard to fathom what the world would look like without Canada’s responsible mining sector; let’s support the hard-working families who make our mining industry what it is!
1- Natural Resources Canada. (n.d.). Green Mining Initiative Canmet MINING, Green Mining Initiative] (https://www.nrcan.gc.ca/science-data/research-centres-labs/canmetmining/green-mining-initiative-canmetmining/8227. Date Accessed: September 2023.
2= Natural Resources Canada. (n.d.). Canadian Mineral Production. (https://www.nrcan.gc.ca/our-natural-resources/minerals-mining/minerals-metals-facts/canadian-mineral-production/20529). Date Accessed: September 2023.
3- Kabir, U. (2023). Top 5 Mining Countries in the World. Insider Monkey. (https://www.insidermonkey.com/blog/top-5-mining-countries-in-the-world-1155525/2)/. Date Accessed: September 2023.
4- International Energy Agency. (2023). The Role of Critical Minerals in Clean Energy Transitions. https://www.iea.org/reports/the-role-of-critical-minerals-in-clean-energy-transitions. Date Accessed: September 2023.
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