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Mining is essential to achieving climate goals

Most Nova Scotians want the province to contribute to global supply of the critical minerals that are essential to achieving climate goals.

Mining is essential to achieving climate goals because things like electric vehicles, wind turbines and solar panels are largely made of minerals. Nova Scotia has mined many critical minerals previously and our geology is known to contain them. However, the Government of Nova Scotia has not made any policy changes to support the critical minerals sector and its recently-released critical minerals strategy contains no specific targets or actions.”

According to a survey, 65% of Nova Scotians support mining critical minerals and only 16% oppose it, a ratio of about 4-to-1 in favour.

In the past Nova Scotia has produced a wide range of minerals now considered critical to achieving climate goals, including copper, tin and zinc. The province also has significant potential for lithium, which is used in electric vehicle batteries.

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The International Energy Agency (IEA) says achieving net zero emissions by 2050 would require tripling supply of critical minerals by 2030 and quadrupling supply by 2040 (

Providing the sheer quantity of minerals needed for net zero is a huge challenge for the global mining industry, and experts around the world are predicting mineral shortages. Governments, like Nova Scotia’s, that set ambitious climate goals also need to work with their mining industries to help achieve those goals.

Other survey results show that:

  • 67% of Nova Scotians agree that the mining and quarrying sector plays an important role in economic development in rural areas. Only 16% disagree.
  • 64% agree that the sector provides well-paying jobs to Nova Scotians. Fifteen percent disagree.
  • 62% believe the sector is important to the provincial economy. Twenty percent disagree.
  • 71% support the mining of gold in the province and only 16% oppose it.

A series of long-standing policy issues discourages investment in Nova Scotia’s critical minerals potential, and harms the industry in general. Resolving these issues would facilitate economic development and help Nova Scotia contribute to critical mineral supply. Learn more at

400 adult Nova Scotians were interviewed online for the poll in May 2024. The margin of error for a probability sample of this size is 4.9%, 19 times out of 20. The poll was conducted by Thinkwell Research and was commissioned by the Mining Association of Nova Scotia.