Resourcing Decarbonisation

As society transitions to a low carbon future, the mining of certain critical minerals will rise exponentially to underpin new energy technologies.

Mining companies must produce unprecedented quantities of metals and minerals, and supply of these minerals is driving resource extraction into new geographic areas and potentially vulnerable ecosystems and communities. The University of Queensland (UQ) is investing seed funding to catalyse impact-driven research in this area.

Researchers are tackling the sources and supply risks around mineral supply, mitigating the carbon impacts of the resources sector, examining market incentives and policy protections, and understanding the complex risk interactions associated with decarbonising society.

The Resourcing Decarbonisation Strategic Program aims to answer fundamental economic research questions and rethink options to address supply issues and identify the nature of the emerging supply gap and what innovation can be used to responsibly address it.

The program also aims to grow interdisciplinary and cross-jurisdictional research on minerals, energy transitions and sustainable development by supporting underpinning research to address two question:

  • What is the size and nature of the mineral supply risks to delivering global commitments to net zero emissions?
  • What role can circular economy principles applied to innovation play in addressing that risk in mining regions?

The goal will be to unlock responsible energy transition mineral supply in a manner that respects ecosystem, reduces energy intensity and delivers against the non-financial values implicit in rising expectations of performance in environmental, social and government (ESG) issues.

Want to get involved?

Contact program leader Associate Professor Steven Micklethwaite if you are interested in getting involved or want to learn more.


Issues at a glance

Energy minerals: complexities of supply and risk

Mitigating the carbon intensity of resource production

Market incentives and business readiness

Policy protections and social safeguards     

Risk interactions and complex system behaviour

Program team

Program Lead

Professor Steven Micklethwaite

Associate Professor Steven Micklethwaite

Program Leader – Resourcing Decarbonisation Program,
Sustainable Minerals Institute


Leadership Panel