Over 140 organizations call on COP26 negotiators to center human rights & environmental impacts of transition mining
"Declaration on Mining and the Energy Transition for COP26", 28 Oct 2021
We,  undersigned organizations, support a just and rapid transition away from fossil fuels and towards a renewable energy system. We are concerned about the impacts of extracting minerals, such as lithium, cobalt, nickel and copper for renewable energy technologies on communities, workers and ecosystems around the world... Metals mining is one of the world’s dirtiest industries, responsible for at least 10% of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. Mining is linked to environmental destruction, freshwater contamination and depletion, human rights abuses, forced displacement, loss of livelihood, violent conflict, unsafe working conditions, and illicit financial flows... Mining, including for battery minerals such as cobalt, lithium and nickel causes disproportionate harm to Indigenous peoples... Our transition to renewable energy sources must be just and equitable and accompanied by a simultaneous transformation away from irresponsible mining by: Centering the human rights of Indigenous, frontline communities... by prioritizing the right to Free, Prior and Informed Consent, including the right to withhold consent;... Prioritizing low-impact circular economy solutions...; Ensuring responsible minerals sourcing at existing mining operations through legally binding regulations...; Implementing transformative, rather than merely technological, solutions that shift away from disposable consumption and private transportation... We call on climate negotiators at the UNFCCC COP26 to make a binding commitment to source transition minerals responsibly. We call on businesses, financial institutions, investors and governments to ensure a clean, just and equitable energy transition by implementing these measures and urge clean energy advocates and climate justice allies to echo these demands in climate change platforms.