Davos, 2020: Eurasian Resources Group among 42 world-leading organisations to agree 10 key principles to foster a sustainable battery value chain, part of the Global Battery Alliance’s 2030 vision


At the 50th anniversary of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Eurasian Resources Group (ERG) became one of the world’s leading 42 organisations who endorsed 10 key principles to foster the creation of a sustainable battery value chain. A diversified natural resources group headquartered in Luxembourg, ERG is a founding member of the Global Battery Alliance, hosted by the World Economic Forum and whose membership has grown to almost 70 members.

As officially announced by the World Economic Forum, organisations supporting the realisation of a battery value chain that meets these principles include some of the world’s leading businesses from the automotive, mining, chemicals and energy sectors with a combined revenue of approximately one trillion dollars. This includes Volvo, Audi, BASF, BMW, Enel, Groupe Renault, Honda, Trafigura, Umicore, Volkswagen Group. Along with industry, the Alliance is a multi-stakeholder initiative and includes the World Bank, UNICEF, Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Government of Japan, African Development Bank, Good Shepherd International Foundation, Pact, and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD). Implementing commitments will be based on existing standards such as the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)’s Due Diligence Guidance and economically viable considerations for a circular and low carbon economy.

Commenting on the importance of the Principles, Benedikt Sobotka, CEO of ERG and co-chair of the Global Battery Alliance, said: “At the 50th anniversary Davos meeting, the Alliance launched 10 key principles that will help bring it one step closer to unlocking the potential of batteries to power sustainable development.  

“We are aiming to ensure that the vast benefits to the global economy never come at the cost of the most vulnerable communities. A key focus for ERG is working with all Alliance members to eradicate child labour within the battery value chain.”

“We all need batteries to power the clean revolution. However, we must ensure violations of human rights do not occur anywhere in the value chain, that local communities benefit and that battery production is sustainable. These guiding principles are an important first step to build a value chain that can deliver on this promise while supporting societies and economies at the same time”, said Dominic Waughray, Managing Director, World Economic Forum.

The Principles will also help guide the development of the ‘battery passport’, a breakthrough concept, designed to enable a transparent value chain, for example, with respect to human rights and the environmental footprint of batteries.

The 10 guiding Principles are an important first step in realising the Global Battery Alliance’s 2030 vision. According to recent study of the Alliance, batteries can reduce transport and power sector emissions by 30%, create up to 10m safe jobs and provide electricity to 600m people for the first time by then. In the next decade, batteries will be a major driver in reducing the carbon footprint of the transport and power sectors, which are currently responsible for 40% of annual carbon emissions globally.

The Principles:

Embedding circular economy approaches to become a major driver to achieve the Paris Agreement by:

  1. Maximising the productivity of batteries
  2. Enabling a productive and safe second life use, circular recovery of battery materials

Creating new jobs, additional economic value and contribute to establishing a low-carbon economy by:

  1. Ensuring transparency of greenhouse gas emissions
  2. Securing their progressive reduction
  3. Prioritising energy efficiency measures
  4. Increasing the use of renewable energy
  5. Fostering battery-enabled renewable energy integration, high quality job creation and skills development

Safeguarding human rights and economic development consistent with the UN Sustainable Development Goals by:

  1. Eliminating child and forced labour
  2. Protecting public health and the environment
  3. Supporting responsible trade and anti-corruption practices, local value creation and economic diversification

Read more here: https://www.weforum.org/press/2020/01/42-global-organizations-agree-on-guiding-principles-for-batteries-to-power-sustainable-energy-transition 

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