Beyond Hot Air. Conversations around critical raw materials supply for the ‘green’ transition

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Beyond Hot Air is a conversation. It is an international, multi-stakeholder initiative that explores the complex landscape of mineral raw materials supply for the ‘green’ transition. Especially critical raw materials (CRM) are a vital part of current forms of ‘green’ transition strategies and corresponding technologies, such as e-mobility, renewable energy and communication technologies. In Europe’s backyard, mining for critical minerals is thus set to increase.

Combating climate change requires that all of us around the globe step out of our comfort zones – considering the full impact of mining for local communities and environments. Through constructive and collaborative conversations, we focus on the complex relationship between mining and the energy transition. We seek to dig deep to expose the dissonances, injustices and potential synergies in current debates, challenging the status quo.

We need to come together and think creatively about the fairness and equity of mining critical raw materials. We aim to do this through listening, sharing and mutual learning across groups who do not necessarily start on  the same page or share similar worldviews.

Beyond Hot Air is a collaborative, decolonial, inter-disciplinary research and knowledge-building project, involving people from diverse backgrounds and all pockets of society: consumers, mining-affected communities of local and Indigenous peoples, companies, investors, regulators, civil society, politicians, scientists, and activists.

The ultimate aim and desired outcome of this initiative is the co-creation of a research commons. This will enable different research groups to collaborate on this topic and share their ideas and findings, through diverse (comparative) projects supported by funding from different sources. The results of this conversational and storytelling-project will be free to use for all interested parties.



Marlene Auer, BA (Admin), University of Vienna (AUT) & Austrian Polar Research Institute APRI

Prof. Simon Batterbury, University of Melbourne (AUS)

Gabriel Eyselein, MA, University of Vienna (AUT)

Dr. Ellen Marie Jensen, Austrian Polar Research Institute APRI

Tristan Martin, BA, Université Laval (CAN)

Prof. Matthias Kowasch, University College of Teacher Education Styria (AUT) & Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences (NOR)

Prof. Frank Melcher, University of Leoben (AUT)

Prof. Thierry Rodon, Université Laval (CAN)

Dr. PD Gertrude Saxinger (Principal Investigator), University of Vienna (AUT) & Austrian Polar Research Institute APRI

Dr. Emma Wilson, ECW Energy (UK) & Austrian Polar Research Institute APRI