Are We Running out of minerals?
I have to turn this case study into a power point presentation that lasts at least 10 minutes. I have to have 5 credible sources in APA format, and I just don’t have the time to work on it.
Are We Running out of minerals?
Minerals can never run out. A key fact about mineral resources is the inverse relationship between the quality and quantity of reserves. As in, the low quality deposits of minerals are more common than the high quality. Minerals is a resource that cannot run out. It is important to know that there is a different between reserves which minerals are identified in location and quantity and resources which cannot be quantified without long-term geologic and geophysical study. For instance, cryolite is a mineral that is no longer commercially available but it does not mean that it is terminally depleted, it means that greater effort is required to find it.
Geologists acknowledge that the world reserves of almost all commodities are greater now than there was on hundred years ago, considering large amounts have been produced. China has reached critical levels in their reserves of rare earth metals. Such minerals include dysprosium, neodymium and lanthanum which are referred to critical minerals due to their importance to the modern society. The identified reserves in China at the current rate of production would last for twenty years. However, it does not mean that China will run out of these rare earth minerals, the reserves in the two decades from now may be the same with an allowance of being smaller or larger as they are now, due to the increased efforts in exploration drilling.
In conclusion, we are not running of minerals, as there are mineral resources which can be converted into mineral reserves by application of time and money. The prediction that we are running out of minerals comes from the incorrect assumption that current reserves indicate the total amount of minerals that are available to us. The truth is we do not have a shortage for any mineral over the human timescale, that is needed.
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Hepburn, C., Pfeiffer, A., Pretis, F., & Teytelboym, A. (2017). Are we running out of minerals. Institute for New Economic Thinking Working Paper.
Mined into extinction: Is the world running out of critical minerals? (2017, April 9). Mining Technology | Mining News and Views Updated Daily. https://www.mining-technology.com/features/featuremined-into-extinction-is-the-world-running-out-of-critical-minerals-5776166/
Worstall, T. (2017, November 10). No, we’re not running out of minerals. Foundation for Economic Education. https://fee.org/articles/no-were-not-running-out-of-minerals/
Gavett, G. (2021, February 26). The world is running low on some metals, and mining may not be the answer. Harvard Business Review. https://hbr.org/2021/02/the-world-is-running-low-on-some-metals-and-mining-may-not-be-the-answer
Beinart, P. (2022, February 17). The real threat of resource depletion. The Atlantic. https://www.theatlantic