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Geo-Resources for the Future

Geo-resources are used everywhere in our daily life, it’s not just the petrol that drives our cars and busses and the gas that warms our houses. Geo-resources are also needed to make sustainable energy sources. Rare earth metals are for instance used for solar cells, wind turbines, electric motors, and last but not least in our mobile phones.

We are facing challenges: increasing CO2 emissions are causing climate change and call for an energy transition towards renewable energy sources. In addition, the supplies of fossil fuels and minerals are limited and their availability and prices strongly depend on global politics. In order to tackle this complex societal challenge, various viewpoints have to be considered. In this minor, you will learn about the various disciplines that are involved in a responsible exploitation and trading of geo-resources and practice their integration. You will work on economic, environmental and social aspects that are needed to achieve a ‘licence to operate’. How is it done today and what do we need to change tomorrow? We need your active participation in group work and interactive work forms (e.g. debates, games, workshops).

For whom?

All Bachelor students from TU Delft, Leiden University, Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR students may follow only Q1 i.e. 15 EC).

Students from various disciplines who are interested in social, economic, environmental and political aspects of the exploitation and trade in geo-resources

What will you learn?

  • A taste of all disciplines involved in responsible exploitation of geo-resources. Geo-resources are not to be let to the geologists – they are an issue of social scientists, economists, politicians, and environmentalists.

  • The complex nature of extracting and trading geo-resources and what is actually needed to do this responsibly.

  • How the topic of circular economy links to geo-resources.

  • The technological, institutional and economical value chain per geo-resource, including historical knowledge.

  • The impact of climate policies, consequences for fossil fuels and subsidies

  • Hear stories from the real world and discuss with experts in the field.

  • Excursions

  • Build a Wiki

  • Write an essay on a pressing problem (with prior essay writing workshop)

  • Participate in debates

  • Group project

Application and registration

See the link 'Application info' for more information on how to register for this minor if you are a student from Leiden

More information

The minor is a cooperation between Leiden University and TU Delft. More information on the content of the programme is available via the website of TU Delft.