Presentation on theme: "T Materials and the Environment Part 2 – World Raw Material Consumption Trends and Environmental Implications of Increasing Consumption (Most recent update."— Presentation transcript:
t Materials and the Environment Part 2 – World Raw Material Consumption Trends and Environmental Implications of Increasing Consumption (Most recent update April 1, 2013)
World Raw Material Consumption Trends Molybdenum mining in Colorado
World and U.S. populations are growing. World economic growth is much more rapid than the rate of population growth – as a result, per capita consumption of goods of all kinds is rising globally. World Raw Material Consumption Trends
World Demand for Selected Raw Materials, 1961 – 2012 Materials Used in Greatest Quanity World Demand for Selected Raw Materials, 1961 – 2012 Materials Used in Greatest Quanity (Million Metric Tons) Source: U.S. Geological Survey, Commodity Summary Statistics (2013). Data for wood from UN, FAOStat Forestry (2013).
World Demand for Selected Raw Materials, 1961 – 2012 World Demand for Selected Raw Materials, 1961 – 2012 Important Metals (Million Metric Tons) Source: U.S. Geological Survey, Commodity Summary Statistics (2013).
World Growth in Consumption of Principal Raw Materials, (Population growth during this period: 2.28x) Steel Cement Aluminum Plastics Wood 4.26x 11.10x 9.45x 48.33x1.60x Source: Data for wood from FAO (2013); for cement, steel, and aluminum from the U.S. Geological Survey (2013); and for plastics from the Association of Plastics Manufacturers in Europe (2013).
U.S. Demand for Selected Raw Materials, 1961 – 2012 U.S. Demand for Selected Raw Materials, 1961 – 2012 Materials Used in Greatest Quantity (Million Metric Tons) Source: U.S. Geological Survey, Commodity Summary Statistics (2013). Data for wood consumption from UN, FAOStat Forestry (2013); 2012 est. Great recession
If a full array of raw materials, including industrial minerals (limestone, clay, sand, gravel), are added to a graphic of materials consumption growth, the picture is even more dramatic.
U.S. Raw Nonfuel Minerals Put into Use Annually from 1900 through 2010 (materials embedded in imported goods not included) Source: U.S. Geological Survey (2012).
U.S. Raw Raw Materials Put into Use Annually from 1900 through 2010 (materials embedded in imported goods not included) Source: U.S. Geological Survey (2012).
In the next slide, raw material consumption growth is shown for two time periods for the United States: and Note the dramatically different numbers – pre-great recession and with the recent recession included within the time frame. Consumption patterns are likely to soon return to the pattern.
U.S. Growth in Basic Raw Materials Consumption, and Steel Cement Aluminum Plastics Wood Population growth – 1.61x x 2.26x 3.48x 49.90x 2.37x Population growth – 1.71x x 1.39x 2.63x 42.40x 1.57x Source: Data for wood from USFS and estimates (2013); for cement, steel, and aluminum from the U.S. Geological Survey (2013); and for plastics from the National Commission on Materials Policy (1975) and the American Plastics Council (2013).
Principal raw materials globally and in the United States are cement, wood, and steel.
Annual World Consumption of Various Raw Materials, 2011 Billion Metric tons Billion m 3 Cement Roundwood Industrial roundwood* Steel Plastics Aluminum * The difference between roundwood and industrial roundwood is wood used for fuel. Roundwood includes both fuelwood and wood used in construction, and for making paper, furniture, and other wood products. Source: Data for wood from FAO (2013); for cement, aluminum, and steel from the U.S. Geological Survey (2013); and for plastics from the Association of Plastics Manufacturers in Europe (2013).
Annual U.S. Consumption of Various Raw Materials, 2011 Million Metric tons Million m 3 Roundwood* Forest products (wood only) Cement Steel Plastics Aluminum Source: Data for wood from UNECE (2013); for cement, steel, and aluminum from the U.S. Geological Survey (2013); and for plastics from the American Plastics Council (2012). * Roundwood is the volume of all wood harvested. More wood is consumed every year in the United States than all metals and all plastics combined.
In view of this high and continuing rate of consumption, does this mean that the world is likely to soon run out of essential raw materials? The good news is that the world is unlikely to physically run out of most types of raw materials anytime soon.
However, there are a number of factors that may combine at some point to limit availability of critical resources. These include rising competition among nations and regions for resources, social issues, and environmental concerns.
Consider Mineral Resources
Mineral resources have become more and more widely available despite (and partly because of) growing rates of consumption.
Lower Grades of Ore Lowest Grades of Ore Highest Grades of Ore (generally exploited first) Ore quality is declining as consumption of metals rises.
High quality ore contains a high percentage of metallic element in a given amount of ore. Low quality ore contains a low percentage of metallic element in a given amount of ore. Note: products that originate from low grade ore are not inferior in quality to products that originate from high grade ore.
There is a strong tendency for mineral resources to increase in quantity as the quality that can be economically exploited goes down.
Lower Grades of Ore Lowest Grades of Ore Highest Grades of Ore (generally exploited first) There is a strong tendency for mineral resources to increase in quantity as the quality that can be economically exploited goes down. Decreasing ore quality Increasing ore availability
Reserves of metals are typically expressed in years... or specifically as World Reserves Indices
To calculate the World Reserves Index, known reserves of a mineral that can be extracted economically at todays prices using todays technology are divided by current annual consumption of that mineral.
World Reserves of Selected Metals World Reserves of Selected Metals (expressed in years of supply) MetalReserves (years) Iron Ore 178 Aluminum 219 Zinc 19 Manganese 43 Lead 20 Copper 35 Nickel 51 Uranium 65 Titanium 79 Source: Richards, J Mining, Society, and a Sustainable World.
These numbers are sometimes interpreted as indicating that the world is about to run out of minerals.
However, World Reserve Index values tend to remain constant or even rise over time.
Nothing said here should be interpreted that all metals are infinitely available.
Also, while long-term availability of most metals is not an issue, the environmental impacts of procuring and processing ore, and especially increasingly lower grades of ore, present significant challenges.
Environmental concerns related to mining and metals production center on long-term impacts to nearby populations, landscapes, water supplies, and air quality and large impacts of conversion of ore to base metals and useful products.
Consider Wood Resources
Wood is a renewable resource. It is infinitely renewable as long as the forests from which it is obtained are managed sustainably Wood is a renewable resource. It is infinitely renewable as long as the forests from which it is obtained are managed sustainably.
There are about 4 billion hectares (10 billion acres) of forests in the world There are about 4 billion hectares (10 billion acres) of forests in the world.
Source: United Nations, FAO, Global Forest Resources Assessment, While forest area is declining in some parts of the world, it is stable or increasing in others. Decreasing Stable or increasing Similar trends can be seen in forest carbon stocks.
Planted forests now make up about 7% of the total forest area globally – 264 million hectares (652 million acres). These supply about one-quarter of the annual harvest of wood used for forest products.
Estimated Deforestation by Type of Forest and Time Period Source: United Nations, FAO, State of the Worlds Forests – Deforestation is ongoing, but at a declining rate worldwide. Losses are wholly within tropical regions and largely attributable to conversion to agriculture – although other factors, including indiscriminate logging, play a role.
In the United States, the Worlds Largest Producer and Consumer of Wood Products: Forest cover is within 1% of what it was in the early 1900s (33% of the land area). Net growth greatly exceeds removals. Forest inventory is increasing. Forest carbon stocks are increasing. Ongoing technology improvements have greatly increased the efficiency of wood use – now 99%+ of each log harvested.
Trends in U.S. Forestland Area Million Acres Source: USDA – Forest Service, 2009.
U.S. Timber Growth and Removals, Billions of cubic feet/ year Source: USDA - Forest Service Figures above only include growth on forest land where periodic harvesting is allowed. Growth in reserves, parks, and wilderness areas is not included.
Standing Timber Inventory – U.S Billion Cubic Feet Source: USDA-Forest Service, Inventory only includes forest land where periodic harvesting is allowed. Timber volumes in reserves, parks, and wilderness areas are not included.
Forest Soil Carbon Inventory, U.S Billion Tons Carbon Source: USEPA (2012). Inventory of US Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks, , p
A History of Wood Utilization Efficiency in the U.S. Source: Bowyer (2012). Data for United States, Percent of Log Volume Entering Sawmill Lumber Other Products Energy Production
Uses of Material Processed at U.S. Milling Sites Source: Bowyer (2012). Data for United States, % processed into lumber. 36% converted to paper, particleboard, fiberboard, insulation board % used to generate energy. 1% waste.
Consider the following illustration of the renewable nature of forests – and of the wood that they produce.
U.S. Population, Wood Harvest, and Net Forest Growing Stock Volume, 1952 and 2007 Million m 3 Billion ft 3 Millions Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2005; U.S. Forest Service, Annual wood harvest expressed in m 3 and growing stock in ft 3 to fit to axes. Between 1952 and 2007, timber harvests increased by 3.8 billion cubic feet annually. So what happened to the volume of growing in U.S. forests? Growing stock volume increased by over 50%!
Environmental concerns linked to forest harvesting center around fears of deforestation and effects on forest values other than wood.
Consumption of both renewable and non- renewable raw materials is increasing. Ongoing improvements in technology and informed management has allowed resource availability to keep pace with increasing consumption. The world will not run out of raw materials anytime soon, though there are concerns about future availability of some key minerals.
Summary With sustainable management (such as practiced in the United States), forests – and the wood that they produce, will never run out. Environmental concerns related to rising resource use are increasing.