Skip to Main Content
Science and Technology for Sustainability Program Science and Technology for Sustainability Program
The National Academies
The National Academies
Home STS Roundtable Sustainability Topics
Quick Links


Download a description of our program

Upcoming Events

Considerations for the Future of Animal Science Research
May 13-14, 2014
Washington, DC

View a list of Sustainability-related meetings at The National Academies 

Past Events:

Roundtable on Science and Technology for Sustainability
December 5-6, 2013
Washington, DC

Network for Emerging Leaders in Sustainability
November 12, 2013
Washington, DC

Best Practices for Risk-Informed Remedy Selection, Closure, and Post-Closure Control of Contaminated Sites
October 30-31, 2013
Washington, DC

Energy Water Considerations for the Sustainable Reuse and Recycling of Materials
September 10, 2013
Washington, DC

Sustainability for the Nation: Resource Connections & Governance Linkages
July 24, 2013
Davis, CA

Pathways to Urban Sustainability: A Focus on Portland
May 28-29, 2013
Portland, OR

Contact Us
Science and Technology for Sustainability (STS)
The National Academies
500 Fifth Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20001
Tel: (202) 334-2694
Fax: (202) 334-3094


Critical Materials for Energy Sustainability and Technology:
A Focus on Material Recovery
The National Research Council’s (NRC) Science and Technology for Sustainability Program (STS), in collaboration with the Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences’ Board on Energy and Environmental Systems (BEES), convened a meeting with the participation of a small group of research leaders and technical experts in private industry as well as representatives from government and academia to discuss the criticality of materials used in energy sustainability related technologies. The supply and availability of energy critical materials requires not only overcoming technical challenges as industry and federal research strive to understand physical and chemical behavior of materials and find alternatives, but also policy challenges due to complicated geopolitical relationships. Although there is an emerging body of literature on the technical analyses of market opportunities and new materials, thought leaders from research and development programs in industry are faced with many complex challenges as they attempt to implement strategies and programs to address sustainability. They have few opportunities to engage in dialogue with their counterparts. This meeting provided a much needed venue for that discussion, which targeted the applied side of critical material sustainability. The meeting also focused on the technical hurdles in recovering materials from waste streams, recycling, and/or the potential for using recovered material in product development, and how best to implement sustainability strategies moving forward. 
Meeting Participants
Director of Research and Emerging Technologies
Alcoa Technology Center
Systems Analyst
Argonne National Laboratory
Materials Research Engineer
National Institute of Standards and Technology
Kurtis Haro
Science Assistant, Directorate for Engineering
National Science Foundation
Senior Engineer 
GE Global Research
Professor, Metallurgical & Materials Engineering
Colorado School of Mines
Adam Powell
CTO and Co-Founder
Metal Oxygen Separation Technologies 
Director, EHS
First Solar, Inc.
James Stevens
Corporate Fellow
The Dow Chemical Company
Refining Development Manager
Johnson Matthey
Shane Thompson
Vice President
Environmental Assurance for NASA Systems
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Director, Science and Technology for Sustainability Program
The National Academies
Director, Board on Energy and Environmental Systems
The National Academies
Dominic Brose
Program Officer, Science and Technology for Sustainability Program
The National Academies
David Cooke 
Associate Program Officer, Board on Energy and Environmental Systems
The National Academies
Dylan Richmond
Research Assistant, Science and Technology for Sustainability Program
The National Academies