South Africa World’s largest producer of chromium used in stainless steel 80% of world’s platinum 30% of world’s gold
Central Africa 42% of world’s cobalt makes high grade steel for aircraft and industrial engines Europeans colonized the regions and exported the resources. This slowed the industrialization process in Africa.
Libya, Nigeria, Algeria and Angola make up 7% of the world’s oil Angola spends $ from oil to pay for a civil war
20% of world’s coffee Agriculture is the single most important economic activity = 66% of population
Expansion of dry conditions into moist areas that are next to deserts Caused by overgrazing, farming, increased population Causing rain forests to disappear Sahara is expanding at 30 sq. mi. per year
4,000 oil spills in 40 years Cleanup is slow or nonexistent Creates acid rain and soot Pipeline explosions killed 2,000 people in 2 years
Built dam to control flood waters Created Lake Nasser Control of river allows for 2 or 3 harvests per year Increased farmable land Helps Egypt avoid floods and drought
Most diamonds are found in river beds and streams through alluvial mining requiring only a shovel, a pan, and hard labor to mine.
Diamonds are not rare or scarce. Through its enormous wealth, power, and influence, De Beers is able to buy large amounts of diamonds whenever countries attempt to flood the market. Because of De Beers, the price of diamonds has remained steady despite civil wars and conflict. The average diamond ring, for example, is marked up 100% to 200%.
Rebel groups use the profits from the sale of diamonds to purchase weapons. In the past 15 years, over 6 million people from Sierra Leone, Angola, Liberia, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo have become refugees after being forced from their homes by diamond fueled conflict. Millions more have died in diamond related conflicts over the past 15 years.
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