Last weekend, the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) took over San Francisco with international leaders convening to discuss the most critical issues impacting the region over the course of a week. This is the largest international gathering in the Bay Area since the United Nations charter was signed there in 1945.
The APEC Multistakeholder Forum (AMF) drew a gathering of global leaders from various governments, civil society organizations, Indigenous peoples, youth, workforce, and women’s groups that convened in advance of APEC to foster collaboration and dialogue throughout the Pacific region.
During the AMF, Aqua Metals’ Chief Business Officer, Dave McMurtry joined a panel discussion to present the company’s vision that building a truly circular supply chain for critical minerals requires building an economy centered around sustainability.
He shared the following remarks as part of the discussion:
“The global push to electrify everything and transform our economy with abundant renewable energy is reliant on creating a sustainable and circular supply chain for the critical minerals and resources that underpin these clean technologies. We must understand that sustainability extends beyond only emissions reduction. We see the path to a decarbonized future that equitably distributes both its challenges and its rewards.”
McMurtry also commented on how building a circular supply chain with sustainable technologies can positively affect a community:
“The environmental and community impacts of sourcing critical minerals for the clean energy economy are well documented. By pioneering advancements in sustainable recycling technology, we are enabling the circular battery economy and decarbonizing large portions of the clean energy supply chain, setting a new paradigm for the industry—one that minimizes the environmental impacts of critical minerals and offers equitable economic opportunities to host communities. These principles of a circular economy are essential to achieving our most ambitious goals to combat climate change and provide a blueprint for an inclusive energy transition that respects both the planet and its people.”
The Forum was organized by the Commonwealth Club World Affairs with the support of the US Department of State and the APEC Secretariat.
In opening the AMF event, Ambassador Matt Murray, United States Senior Official for APEC, shared the following perspective: “Although the impact of climate change affects everyone, it does not affect all communities equally. Some in the APEC region—often those who have not historically had opportunities to participate in making decisions to address the climate crisis—experience greater suffering.”
Aqua Metals’ presence at the APEC summit is a testament to its leadership in addressing the pressing global challenge of climate change through sustainable solutions for the critical minerals that will power an electrified future. AQMS’ contribution to the panel discussion underscored the importance of inclusivity in the transition to cleaner energy sources, emphasizing that the benefits of such transitions should not be at the cost of marginalized communities.
The forum’s focus on green jobs and meaningful work aligned closely with Aqua Metals’ mission to create safe, sustainable, and desirable jobs in the recycling sector. With its innovative approach to battery recycling, Aqua Metals is making a significant impact on local communities while contributing to the global shift towards net-zero carbon economies.