The Rare Metals War
Guillaume Pitron, Bianca Jacobsohn
The resources race is on. Powering our digital lives and green technologies are some of the Earth’s most precious metals – but they are running out. And what will happen when they do?
The green-tech revolution will reduce our dependency on nuclear power, coal, and oil, heralding a new era free of pollution, fossil-fuel shortages, and crossborder tensions. But there is a hidden dark side to this seemingly utopian vision.
In this international bestseller, award-winning journalist and documentary-maker Guillaume Pitron reveals that, by breaking free of fossil fuels, we are in fact setting ourselves up for a new dependence – on rare metals such as cobalt, gold, and palladium.
These are essential to electric vehicles, wind turbines, and solar panels, as well as our smartphones, computers, tablets, and other technologies. But we know very little about how rare metals are mined and traded, or their environmental, economic, and geopolitical costs; meanwhile, China has captured the lion’s share of the market and is using it to consolidate its position as a leading global power.
Drawing on six years of research across a dozen countries, The Rare Metals War is a vital expose of the ticking time-bomb that lies beneath our new technological order.
'The Rare Metals War is Guillaume Pitron's urgent expose of the race for resources and an examination of its environmental and human impacts.' -- Dan Shaw * Happy Magazine * '[E]xposes the dirty underpinnings of clean technologies in a debut that raises valid questions about energy extraction.' * Publishers Weekly * 'An expert account of a poorly understood but critical element in our economy.' * Kirkus Reviews * 'French Writer and analyst Guillaume Pitron warns about growing reliance on rare-earth metal - which are necessary to build high-tech products ... He shines a light on "the untold story" of the energy and digital transitions.' * European Scientist * 'Both novel and eye opening ... The Rare Metals War is worth the read.' -- Art Flynn * Irish Examiner * '[T]he journalist and filmmaker warns against the optimistic belief that technology is the solution ... At a time when many claim to be "citizens of the world" or retreat into naive or hypocritical protectionism, Pitron's book is an attempt to open people's eyes to the consequences of their societal choices and lifestyles.' * Green European Journal * 'Recognising that the latest technologies might not be as green as we like to think is a good place to start planning for a better world.' -- John Arlidge * The Sunday Times *
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