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Critical Minerals Association - Working Group Chairs 2023

Updated: Feb 12, 2023

The Critical Minerals Association (CMA) currently has five working groups-- forums where our members come together to share and discuss common interests and challenges in the critical minerals sphere. They form the fabric of the Association.


From sharing industry updates to bringing experts together for thought-provoking discussions, our members collaborate in our working groups and determine the workshops, events, reports, interviews, and outreach programmes needed to drive the UK's critical minerals agenda.


The five working groups of the CMA consist of:

  • Environmental, Social & Governance (ESG)

  • Circular Economy

  • UK Domestic Critical Minerals

  • Public Perceptions & Engagement

  • International Critical Minerals

With the support of our members and our working groups, the CMA has been able to successfully bring critical minerals and supply chain issues to the UK Government’s attention. We are proud to have influenced the UK’s Net Zero Strategy, the formation of the Critical Minerals Intelligence Centre, and the release of the UK’s very first Critical Minerals Strategy, Resilience for the Future.


For these achievements we owe thanks to our brilliant working group Chairs, who commit their time and expert knowledge to progressing our goals of creating responsible supply chains, bridging the gap between industry and government, and educating civil society about modern mining. We also owe thanks to all the active participants of our working groups for their enthusiasm, expertise, and ideas.


We are delighted that many of our working groups are led by impressive women in mining, who are helping to demonstrate and promote values of equality and diversity in the industry.


We hope to expand upon the good work accomplished in 2022 and carry it into 2023. We thank our former working group Chairs for their diligence and welcome our new and continuing Chairs. Together we look forward to another year of progress and collaboration!


Environmental, Social & Governance (ESG)

Chaired by:

  • Jane Joughin, Corporate Consultant (Sustainability), SRK Consulting

  • Robert Pell, Founder & CEO, Minviro

Highlights: The ESG group discuss and publish thought leadership around responsible sourcing and processing of critical minerals, to help Government and Industry understand and expand its role in building responsible critical mineral supply chains.


In 2022, the group carried out a series of multi-stakeholder workshops for government with industry and academia. The findings of these workshops contributed and featured in the CMA’s ESG Paper ‘Breaking Down Barriers for Responsible Sourcing of Critical Minerals’. This paper followed from the success of our 2021 ESG Paper ‘A Blueprint for Responsible Sourcing of Critical Minerals,’ which features in the UK Government’s 2022 Critical Minerals Strategy.


Our 2022 ESG Paper was launched in UK Parliament and supported by then Secretary of State for International Trade, Rt Hon Anne-Marie Trevelyan MP. It re-emphasised the urgent actions the Government needs to take to develop responsible critical mineral supply chains, and the sectors in which the UK has an opportunity to become a global leader.


With thanks to former Chairs for their hard work in 2022 – Aldo Pennini, Associate, Satarla & Marion Thomas, Vice President of ESG, Giyani Metals. A special thank you to Aldo, who chaired the ESG working group from 2020-2022 and has helped it develop into the influential group that it is today.


Circular Economy

Chaired by:

  • Zama Dadan, Director, ARCH Emerging Markets Partners

  • Lucy Smith, Ventures Lead, Materials Processing Institute UK

Highlights: The Circular Economy Group engages stakeholders in multiple and diverse sectors of the circular economy, such as innovation and legislation, to address barriers and opportunities in the UK to create a circular economy in line with the Government’s ambitions.

In 2022, the CMA partnered with the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) to deliver a panel discussion webinar and a series of closed-door workshops on the Circular Economy of Critical Minerals at Burlington House on the 21st October. The workshops compiled expert knowledge on the circular economy and created connections between academia, government, and industry to advance work in commercialising R&D, legislation and waste reform, among other issues.


With thanks to Zama Dadan for her hard work and enthusiasm as Chair in 2022 and we look forward to her continued leadership in 2023.


UK Domestic Critical Minerals

Chaired by:

  • Patrick Anderson, Chief Executive Officer, Dalradian

  • Peter Robinson, Director, Weardale Lithium

Highlights: The UK Domestic Critical Minerals Group engages with various stakeholders to discuss barriers to attracting investment into the UK and opportunities around growing a domestic supply of critical minerals.


The group organised a roundtable on streamlining the UK planning and permitting system, and published their recommendations in a paper titled ‘Planning & Permitting’ (June 2022). The group also published a paper on mineral rights, ‘Unlocking Great Britain’s Potential’, providing recommendations to Government on how to help Industry overcome barriers in critical mineral exploration and development.


In October, the CMA and the Geological Society Business Forum (GSBF) held an afternoon of networking, presentations, and Q&A sessions on the UK Mineral Rights System. The event highlighted the challenges and complexities of mineral rights and framed recommendations for junior and experienced mining companies alike.


With thanks to the group's former Chairs for their hard work in 2022 – Jane Joughin, Corporate Consultant, SRK Consulting & Richard Williams, CEO, Cornish Metals.


Public Perceptions & Engagement

Chaired by:

  • Lucy Crane, ESG & Sustainability Manager, Cornish Lithium

  • Chris Stockey, Project Manager, Satarla

Highlights: The Public Perceptions & Engagement group aims to raise awareness of the importance of critical minerals to society and the various career pathways along critical mineral supply chains to young people.

As a result of their engagement with stakeholders, the group published a paper on ‘A Talent Pipeline’ (April 2022) detailing how the UK Government can ensure there are sufficient skills in geology, engineering and metallurgy to mitigate against an ageing workforce.


More recently, the group teamed up with the Geological Society to deliver a series of talks, workshops, and debates to gifted 13- and 14-year-olds. The event welcomed 30 students to Burlington House who were tasked with discussing the advantages and disadvantages of two different mining projects, taking into consideration different perspectives including local stakeholders, politicians, and ESG consultants.


With thanks to former Chair Ben Lepley, Environmental Consultant, SRK Consulting for his limitless enthusiasm to improve perceptions & engagement , and for his key role in helping to shape the working group from 2020-2022 into the established group that it is today.


International Critical Minerals

Chaired by:

  • Jonathan Henry, Chair, Giyani Metals

  • Drew Craig, General Manager, Aberdeen Minerals

Highlights: Established in 2022, the International Working Group focuses on international supply chains and linkages to the UK, how Government can support UK companies operating overseas, how to attract foreign investment to secure the UK’s critical mineral needs, and collaborate internationally to diversify supply chains.

The group successfully delivered a networking event on 5 July, ‘Financing Critical Minerals Projects’, which brought together the world of finance with upstream and midstream industry. You can read S&P coverage of the event and call to action here.

With thanks to former Chair Elbert Loois, former CEO, E-Tech Resources.

If you would like to take part in our working groups, the Critical Minerals Association welcomes new members to help us shape the critical minerals agenda.

Find out more at https://www.criticalmineral.org/membership and please contact us for more information.

Article by Eileen Maes, Public Affairs and Communications Associate, CMA

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