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Graedel, Harper, “A Tale of Three Metals” in E-Waste Management; From Waste to Resource T. Connolly - MSc Sustainable Resource Management 2013/14 1.

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Presentation on theme: "Graedel, Harper, “A Tale of Three Metals” in E-Waste Management; From Waste to Resource T. Connolly - MSc Sustainable Resource Management 2013/14 1."— Presentation transcript:

1 Graedel, Harper, “A Tale of Three Metals” in E-Waste Management; From Waste to Resource T. Connolly - MSc Sustainable Resource Management 2013/14 1

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3 Uses ?? Copper ◦ Pipes, wire, coins Tungsten ◦ Light filament, soldering irons Indium ◦ LCD TVs, touch screen devices

4 Resource sustainability How do we predict long-term demand? ◦ Use approximate upper limit on integrated demand - U.S.A., Europe, Japan ◦ Assuming a world population of 9 billion by 2050 ◦ Assume these 9 billion people use the same amount per capita as our current richer neighbours ◦ Establish an approximate total requirement

5 Resource sustainability Does the predicted requirement match the resource availability?

6 Copper: A sustainable resource? Geographical availability?? ◦ Widely distributed Recycling ?? ◦ Very efficiently recycled ◦ Recycled content % ◦ EoL recycling rate of 40-50% ◦ This generates large portions of the demand Projected demand is equal to the estimated resource available ◦ Satisfactory sustainable resource!!!

7 Tungsten: A sustainable resource? Geographical distribution? ◦ China- 70% ◦ Could someday raise geopolitical issues Recycling? ◦ Recycled content 35% ◦ EoL recycling rate 10-25% Demand Projections? ◦ Long depletion time making it efficient for a predicted years Sustainability uncertain due to geographical availability

8 Indium: A sustainable resource? Geographical distribution? ◦ Very uncertain because its a by product of zinc ◦ Largest zinc stocks in Austrailia, China & U.S. Recycling? ◦ Recycled content 25-50% ◦ EoL recycling rate <1% Projected demand ◦ Problematic to determine if the future demand meets the supply ◦ Its rapid increase in demand in the past decade has already brought about disruptions in supply Sustainability relies on future mining of zinc ores, creating huge uncertainty with this

9 Conclusions Copper resources appear adequate and widely available Tungsten supplies appear adequate ◦ Global supplies could come under pressure as most supplies are in China Indium is in growing demand ◦ Worryingly its existence depends on uncertainty in the ability for supply to meet demand

10 Final conclusion More information is needed Pay more attention to long-term availability of materials!!!

11 Thanks for your time! Any questions???


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