By Gus Gunn
Mankind is utilizing a wider variety of metals in higher amounts than ever ahead of. hence there's expanding international main issue over the long term availability of safe and enough offers of the metals wanted via society. serious metals, that are these of becoming fiscal value that will be prone to destiny shortage, are a selected worry. for lots of of those now we have little details on how they're centred within the Earth’s crust, easy methods to extract them from their ores, and the way to exploit, recycle and get rid of them successfully and safely.
released with the British Geological Survey, the Critical Metals Handbook brings jointly a wealth of data on severe metals and gives a starting place for bettering the long run defense and sustainability of serious steel provides. Written via foreign specialists, it presents a distinct resource of authoritative details on diversified points of the serious metals, together with geology, deposits, processing, functions, recycling, environmental concerns and markets. it truly is aimed toward a large non-specialist viewers, together with pros and teachers operating within the exploration and mining sectors, in mining finance and funding, and in mineral processing and production. it's going to even be a invaluable reference for coverage makers eager about source administration, land-use making plans, eco-efficiency, recycling and comparable fields.
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Suppliers of minerals – miners and explorers The mining industry exists to meet the mineral requirements of consumers and, in so doing, make profits for shareholders. Although not on the scale of the oil and gas industries, the mining industry is, nevertheless, a very large industry. The enterprise value1 of the global mining industry in 2010 is estimated to have been around Market Cap $bn 190 92 90 51 39 34 32 32 29 26 20 18 17 16 16 13 13 11 9 9 US$2100 billion (Citi, 2011a). London lies right at the heart of this industry, and is host to the headquarters of several of the world’s largest mining companies.
Comparison, the value of mined cobalt in that year was around US$2 billion, the value of rare earths was around US$1 billion, the value of antimony was somewhat less than US$1 billion, while the markets for gallium, germanium, indium and tantalum combined amounted to less than US$1 billion. The value of rare earths production, it might be noted, was around one per cent the value of iron ore production, revealing a striking difference between the importance accorded these minerals by policy makers and the importance accorded them by the industry.
Copper grade Copper recovery rate To some degree, the upward pressure on industry costs which results from these trends can be offset – or even more than offset – by costreducing improvements in technology, and historically this has been the general experience of the industry. However, there is no law which says that this has to be the case and, for a number of mineral commodities, it would appear that the declining quality of reserves, combined with other factors such as higher energy prices, water availability and tougher environmental requirements, 30 david humphreys 7000 US$/tonne (2011US$) 6000 5000 4000 3000 2000 1000 0 2004 2007 2009 are pushing up net production costs, notwithstanding continuing technological progress.