Robert Friedland, a renowned mining financier and promoter, took the stage at the recent Mines and Money Americas conference in Toronto to highlight the need for platinum and copper, as rapid global urbanization continues. Both are key metals in projects his company Ivanhoe Mines (TSX: IVN; US-OTC: IVPAF) is developing in Africa.
“I am not here to depress the gold bugs in this room. I’m just here to get you excited about copper and other metals that we need in our new society,” Friedland said.
The executive — who sold the large nickel-copper-cobalt deposit Voisey’s Bay in Labrador to Inco for $4.3 billion in 1996, and whose company discovered the large Oyu Tolgoi copper-gold deposit in Mongolia in 2001 — noted that there will likely be a billion more people living in urban environments by 2030. As a result, more people would live in cities filled with “toxic smog,” he said, citing that 6.5 million people die a year from air pollution.
To combat air pollution from tradiotional vehicles, Friedland noted the automotive industry plans to use more platinum to make hydrogen-powered cars and more copper to produce electric cars.
Honda’s new hydrogen-powered Clarity Fuel Cell uses an ounce of platinum, Friedland said, noting that other car manufacturers, including part of the Volkswagen Group, would follow suit in making greener cars.
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