Chatham House provides expertise and helps to coordinate the European Rare Earths Competency Network (ERECON). This network of over 70 European experts from industry, academia and policy-makers is brought together by the European Commission and the European Parliament to look at ways of fostering sustainable supply security for rare earths.
Rare earth elements are a group of 17 metals used in high-tech products like electric vehicles and wind turbines. The European Union imports all its rare earth metal needs from countries like China and experts predict that demand for these metals will only grow as consumer preferences shift towards hi-tech and green products. To ensure supply security, the EU is trying to improve access to rare earths, and boost recycling, resource efficiency and sustainable extraction across the continent.