Can supply chains keep up with the dash to decarbonisation?
The House of Lords Science and Technology Committee will investigate UK supply chains for low-carbon vehicles, in the latest evidence sessions for its inquiry into batteries and fuel cells.
The Committee will hear from researchers about supply chains of critical materials for the manufacture of batteries, fuel cells and electric motors. Members will seek to understand these minerals’ availability in nature, constraints on trade, and the environmental and ethical impacts of extraction and processing.
The Committee will then question vehicle manufacturers about their supply chains, to understand the flows of components and the current scale of operations in the UK. Members will consider the level of expansion in supply chains and skills that would be needed if the UK is to achieve its decarbonisation aims for transport.
Across both sessions, the Committee will consider the potential to reduce imports and environmental impacts by using alternative materials, modifying technologies, and implementing large-scale recycling to support the supply chains.
- How secure is the UK's access to key minerals for manufacturing batteries, fuel cells and electric motors?
- Where in the world are the main sources of critical minerals, and who influences the supplies?
- What are the environmental, safety and ethical impacts of extracting and processing these minerals, and what initiatives are in place to mitigate these impacts?
- How large a role could recycling play in the future, and what changes in manufacturing would be needed?
- What is the potential for UK supply chains to be scaled up further to support the level of vehicle manufacture needed to meet decarbonisation targets? What would that take, from industry and Government?
- How can the UK ensure it has a supply of skilled workers to support the manufacture and maintenance of battery and fuel cell vehicles?