Limits To Growth/selected important minerals

Introduction

The production rates and estimated exhaustion rates (years to exhaustion at the current rate of consumption and also the number of years left if the world consumed at half the US per-capita rate.) for several important minerals are shown in this table, adapted from [1]

Mineral Exhaustion Rate, Current Exhaustion Rate, Half US Rate World mine Production 2005 (Tonnes)
Antimony 30 yrs 15-20yrs 150,000
Aluminum 1027 yrs 510 yrs 31,900,000
Chromium 143 yrs 40 yrs 18,900,000
Copper 61 yrs 38 yrs 15,000,000
Gold 45 yrs 36 yrs 2,430,000
Molybdenum n/a n/a 186,000
Nickel 90 yrs 57 yrs 1,449,000
Phosphorous/Phosphate Rock 345 yrs 142 yrs 154,000,000
Platinum 360 yrs 42 yrs 548,000
Silver 29 yrs 9 yrs 20,411,000
Tantalum 116 yrs 20 yrs 142,700
Titanium n/a n/a 16,134,000
Tin 40 yrs 17 yrs 337,000
Zinc 46 yrs 34 yrs 10,100,000

References:Edit

  1. Turner, R. K., Morse-Jones, S., and Fisher, B. (2007). Perspectives on the ‘Environmental Limits’ Concept: A report to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. CSERGE, Norwich. Defra, London.