Stewart Dickson, CEO of Weardale Lithium

The second annual North East Future Resources Conference (NEFR), which takes place in Newcastle on 4 and 5 October, will be held at the Common Room in the centre of Newcastle.

Speakers and panellists include relevant industry entrepreneurs, representatives from central and local government, academia, scientific bodies and the investment fund management industry.

Delegates will hear about the growth and importance of the role of the North to the UK’s economy as it builds a strategic portfolio of assets ranging from mineral resources to giga-factories, renewable energy projects, electric vehicles manufacturers and their supply chains.

Key themes on the agenda include UK and North energy landscape and transition, critical raw materials and markets, EV battery supply chains and auto industry demand, geothermal potential, and sustainability, recycling, resources and climate technology, all against a backdrop of the UK and Northern energy landscape and transition to a net-zero economy.


Speakers and panellists already confirmed for the conference include Lord Peter Lilley, a member of the House of Lords Environment and Climate Change Committee, Tees Valley Mayor, Lord Ben Houchen and Henry Sanderson, author of Volt Rush: The Winners and Losers in the Race to Go Green.

Panels will also include representatives from the Advanced Propulsion Centre, Gneiss Energy, North East Battery Alliance, the Critical Minerals Association, Watercycle Technologies and the Geological Society.

NEFR is organised by Weardale Lithium, which is a natural resources company based in County Durham seeking to sustainably extract lithium from geothermal brines to produce lithium carbonate for use in EV batteries.

The event is being sponsored by Ward Hadaway, ARUP, IC Planning, SLB, Carter Jonas and Minviro.

Stewart Dickson, CEO of Weardale Lithium, said: “The conference reflects the growing focus on the North for its role in the drive to net-zero through innovation that attracts investment and creates sustainable and long-term industries.

“We have brought together a group of very high calibre and knowledgeable speakers and panellists who will provide insight and debate for delegates, as well as excellent networking opportunities with a range of companies and investment specialists that are highly active in this area.

Stewart added: “The North is increasingly becoming a focal point for renewable energy production and electric vehicle manufacturing and very much integrated into these areas are the opportunities in the extraction and use of critical minerals and metals.

“NEFR brings these areas together to showcase a holistic understanding of the challenges and opportunities that are presented by the transition to clean energy and low emission transport.”