Share this on Twitter Share this on Facebook Share this on LinkedIn Share this on Sina Weibo Share this on Wechat Share this on LinkedIn The drive with axle and battery of a Tesla Model Y in Germany's Tesla Gigafactory. Credit: Patrick Pleul/picture-alliance/dpa/AP Images From solar panels to wind turbines and electric vehicle (EV) batteries, demand for the technologies to power the transition to green energy is skyrocketing. Chinese companies have already amassed dominant positions in the renewable energy market, and its mineral suppliers stand to gain enormously. Western governments are waking up to the importance of securing these inputs — the so-called ‘critical minerals’ — with the U.S., Canada, UK and EU scrambling to put together strategies. At The Wire, we’ve covered this global competition and the Chinese companies and characters involved: from copper to cobalt, lithium, nickel, and others. But it’s worth taking a step back to ask what these minerals are used for, and how much of them we need. This week, The Wire examines these questions and takes stock of China’s role in their supply chains. CRITICAL MINERALS: WHAT ARE THEY GOOD FOR? Data: Adamas Intelligence, World Bank The term ‘critical minerals’ is Subscribe or login to read the rest. Subscribers get full access to: Exclusive longform investigative journalism, Q&As, news and analysis, and data on Chinese business elites and corporations. We publish China scoops you won't find anywhere else. A weekly curated reading list on China from David Barboza, Pulitzer Prize-winning former Shanghai correspondent for The New York Times. A daily roundup of China finance, business and economics headlines. We offer discounts for groups, institutions and students. Go to our Subscriptions page for details.