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Rare Earths risk list

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Rare Earths risk list

Unread postby dolanbaker » Tue 13 Sep 2011, 15:50:23


http://www.bgs.ac.uk/mineralsuk/statist ... kList.html
A new supply risk index for chemical elements or element groups which are of economic value

The risk list gives a quick indication of the relative risk in 2011 to the supply of the chemical elements or element groups which we need to maintain our economy and lifestyle. The position of an element on this list is determined by a number of factors which might impact on supply. These include the abundance of elements in the Earth's crust, the location of current production and reserves, and the political stability of those locations.

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Re: Rare Earths risk list

Unread postby Subjectivist » Wed 12 Jul 2017, 12:56:25

This is one of those problems created by bureacracy, not physical limits.

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Re: Rare Earths risk list

Unread postby Zarquon » Sat 26 Aug 2017, 17:41:14

Just because the rare-earth-scare crops up here occasionally, here's a more sober analysis:

http://thebulletin.org/clean-energy-and ... worry10785

“Rare earths” are 17 chemical elements with awkward names and unusual properties. Their atomic numbers are 57–71, 21, and 39. Their two subfamilies, one scarcer and hence more valuable than the other, have similar chemistries, so they’re generally found and mined together.

Despite their name, rare earths are not geologically rare but are widely dispersed throughout the Earth’s crust. They are mined in few places and by few firms, though, because they tend not to occur in highly concentrated form. Further raising miners’ costs and risks, the world market for rare earths is modest (several billion dollars a year), volatile, complex, and dominated by China, where not all mines and exports are legal and transparent. One expert concluded that about half of 2015 global production was off the books.

Rare earths’ uses are highly specialized but diverse. These elements are used in mobile phones, superstrong magnets and hence advanced motors and generators, some oil-refinery catalysts, certain lasers and fluorescent-lamp or flat-screen phosphors, some batteries and superconductors, and other technologies important to modern life. Some rare earths are particularly useful in energy applications. Around 2010, some articles and commentators warned that shortages of rare earths, or China's near-monopoly on them, could choke off the West's shift to renewable energy and other clean technologies. This was never true—but the myth persists.“Rare earths” are 17 chemical elements with awkward names and unusual properties. Their atomic numbers are 57–71, 21, and 39. Their two subfamilies, one scarcer and hence more valuable than the other, have similar chemistries, so they’re generally found and mined together.

Despite their name, rare earths are not geologically rare but are widely dispersed throughout the Earth’s crust. They are mined in few places and by few firms, though, because they tend not to occur in highly concentrated form. Further raising miners’ costs and risks, the world market for rare earths is modest (several billion dollars a year), volatile, complex, and dominated by China, where not all mines and exports are legal and transparent. One expert concluded that about half of 2015 global production was off the books.

Rare earths’ uses are highly specialized but diverse. These elements are used in mobile phones, superstrong magnets and hence advanced motors and generators, some oil-refinery catalysts, certain lasers and fluorescent-lamp or flat-screen phosphors, some batteries and superconductors, and other technologies important to modern life. Some rare earths are particularly useful in energy applications. Around 2010, some articles and commentators warned that shortages of rare earths, or China's near-monopoly on them, could choke off the West's shift to renewable energy and other clean technologies. This was never true—but the myth persists.
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