While previous studies examine the impact of renewable energy generation capacity on mineral imports where minerals are broadly defined, this study examines the role of three decarbonization indicators (energy efficiency, energy's carbon footprint, and renewable generation) in driving import demand for four specific minerals used in multiple decarbonization technologies: copper, aluminum, nickel, and manganese. Our results, based on the cross-sectional autoregressive distributed lag modeling approach applied to panel data from 33 countries, suggest that imports for some minerals increase in response to (1) investments in energy efficiency (aluminum and manganese), (2) reducing energy's carbon footprint (copper), and (3) investments in renewable energy generation (copper and manganese). Nickel imports were found to increase with higher levels of energy use per GDP suggesting their role in cleaner vehicles, which heavily rely on electrification, higher electricity use, and urbanization. When imports are broadly defined to include all types of mineral groups, import values were found to be responsive to higher renewable generation but not the other decarbonization indicators. Our findings provide insights into developing mineral-specific strategies and policy frameworks to ensure supply chain resilience.



Keywords and Phrases

Critical minerals; CS-ARDL; Energy efficiency; Energy transition; Grid modernization; Nickel; OECD

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Article - Journal

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© 2024 Elsevier, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

05 Jan 2024

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Economics Commons