Minerals

The Earth crust contains a variety of both fuel and non-fuel minerals. Fuel minerals include coal and oil which have been discussed above. Nonfuel minerals include metals (iron, aluminum, copper, etc.), industrial minerals (lime, phosphate rock, gypsum, etc.), and construction minerals (sand, gravel, rock, etc.)

The amounts of minerals on Earth are currently insufficiently inventoried. The production of selected metal and nonmetal minerals in 2003 is represented in Table 5. It shows that iron is the most common mineral while

100%

Figure 3 Share of coal consumption between regions.

Asia Pacific Africa

Middle East Europe and Eurasia South and Central America North America

Figure 3 Share of coal consumption between regions.

Developing countries

Developed countries

World

Developing countries

Developed countries

World

Production Consumption

0 4000000 8000000

Figure 4 Energy production and consumption 1990-2000 (in ktoe) (IEA, 2004).

12000000

Table 4 Per capita environmental space and resource uses for major resources in the world

Resources

World environmental space per capita (2050) World present use per capita (2001) Developed Developing

CO2 emission 1.71

Total primary energy (GJ acre116.38

Fossil fuel 62.93

Nuclear 13.15

Renewables 40.30

3.9t

11.2

192.6 161.59 20.03 10.98

other metals like gold and nickel are exploited limitedly. Among the nonmetal minerals, salt is produced the most.

Seventy-five percent of the mineral resources are consumed by industrialized countries. The most important consumers are the United States, Japan, Canada, Europe, and Russia. However, in industrialized countries, the demand for mineral resources slows down as these countries basically finished their infrastructure. On contrary, the consumption of mineral resources in developing countries still increases as they currently industrialize their economies.

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