Användning och återvinning av potentiellt kritiska material. Kunskapsöversikt
This study provides input to a study which maps and analyzes the mining and recycling
potential of various metal and mineral resources in Sweden, conducted by Geological survey
of Sweden (SGU) and the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) on behalf
of the Swedish government.
Based on a literature review, a compilation of existing knowledge in two areas is presented:
(1) the use of candidate materials in products and industries, and (2) current recycling
opportunities of candidate materials. It includes 41 of the materials shortlisted as
candidates for Sweden by SGU and the SEPA, i.e. materials that may become pointed out
as critical. In most cases, the compilation accounts for current use and recycling on a global
average since only such information is publicly available.
Candidate materials are used in many areas already today, and not just in high-tech
products with growing markets, such as electric cars, wind power and solar cells. Systematic
identification requires detailed insight into many sectors of industry, manufacturing
processes and product categories, variants of these and how they change over time. In
some rare cases, detailed information is publicly available. Therefore, we present briefly
the extent of current use of each of the 41 materials in 24 different use areas (products and
industries). A few examples of the material use in weight per product are provided: electrical
and electronic products and cars.
Recycling opportunities differ between candidate materials, but, for different reasons,
also between different products that contain the same candidate material. Therefore,
recycling rates for each of the use areas are presented. The focus of the study is on recycling
of candidate materials from consumption waste, but production waste is also addressed
as the opportunities often differ significantly.
There is currently little information on many of the candidate materials, but there is a
growing interest in these materials and issues related to them. More knowledge would
increase the opportunities to take informed decisions on the efforts required to make
use of the currently unrecovered material resources in discarded products in society.