Anticipating metal scarcity challenges in mobility transitions

This project will assess the metal scarcity challenges of different mobility transitions. A number of ongoing technologically and socially innovative mobility solutions are currently being pursued in parallel: battery electric vehicles, fuel-cell vehicles, automated vehicles, car sharing, electric roads, etc. Several of these solutions aim at mitigating climate change impacts from transports. However, there is a risk of problem-shifting into resource challenges, in particular related to scarce metals. Some notable examples include lithium, cobalt and rare-earth elements in batteries and electric motors, but scarce metals are present in many different car components, both in electric and fossil-fueled cars. This project will develop a number of possible scenarios for the transport system, including both light and heavy road-bound vehicles, as well as their supporting infrastructure. The metal resource intensities of these scenarios will then be assessed and compared. The knowledge derived from the project will inform various societal actors about potential metal scarcity problems that different mobility transitions might face. The project will be executed by an interdisciplinary group of researchers from different departments (TME, SEE, E2), drawing upon their expertise in the following three scientific areas: future studies, electrical engineering and industrial ecology.

Partner organizations

  • Swedish Electomobility Center (Academic, Sweden)
Start date 01/01/2020
End date The project is closed: 31/12/2021

Page manager Published: Tue 03 May 2022.