Category Archives: Mining

Mining uses 10% of world energy

Ugo Bardi’s The Universal Mining Machine

Preface. Below I’ve excerpted some of Ugo Bardi’s “The Universal Mining Machine” (24 January 2008 europe.theoildrum), but I’ve left a great deal out of this excellent article, I encourage you to read all of it if you have time. The … Continue reading

Posted in Elements: Critical, Mining, Ugo Bardi | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

Minerals essential for wind, solar, and high-tech, are anything but clean and green

This is a book review of Pitron’s “The rare metals war”.  To produce the metals and minerals to make a transition to wind, solar, nuclear and so on would be incredibly destructive and filthy. A fifth of China’s arable land … Continue reading

Posted in Battery - Utility Scale, Elements: Critical, Elements: Rare Earth, Mining, Peak Resources, Photovoltaic Solar, Recycle, Wind | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

328 Million Americans use 3.2 million pounds of minerals, metals, and fuels in their lifetime

Preface. Even if you go off the grid, society is using up minerals at an exponential rate to maintain the non-negotiable American lifestyle, which in 2006, required 3.7 million pounds of minerals, metals, and fuels in each person’s lifetime, or … Continue reading

Posted in Elements: Critical, Mining, Recycle | Tagged , | 6 Comments

Batteries are made of rare, declining, critical, and imported elements

Preface.  Since oil and other fossils are finite and emit carbon, the plan is to electrify society with batteries.  But doh!  Minerals used in batteries are finite too.  And dependent on fossil-fueled transportation and manufacturing from mining trucks, to smelter, … Continue reading

Posted in Batteries, Elements: Critical, Elements: Rare Earth, Mining | Tagged , | 7 Comments

Foreign Policy: The limits of clean energy

Preface. This article appeared in the magazine Foreign Policy. Some of the points made are: Renewables to power the world would require 34 million metric tons of copper, 40 million tons of lead, 50 million tons of zinc, 162 million … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Energy, Consumption, Mining, Peak Lithium | Tagged , , | 7 Comments

Peak Stainless Steel

Steel and nickel aren’t on the critical mineral list, but nickel ought to be, since this study shows that there is a significant risk that stainless steel production will reach its maximum capacity around 2055 because of declining nickel production, … Continue reading

Posted in Elements: Critical, Infrastructure, Mining | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Rare: The High-Stakes Race to Satisfy Our Need for the Scarcest Metals on Earth by Keith Veronese

Preface.  Capitalism believes there’s a solution for everything due to Man’s Inventive Brain, but when it comes to getting metals out of the earth, there are some very serious limitations.  In parts per billion, there’s only 4 of platinum, 20 … Continue reading

Posted in Elements: Critical, Elements: Platinum Group, Elements: Precious, Elements: Rare Earth, Infrastructure, Mining, Peak Resources | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Mining: Waste, Pollution, Destruction from Ugo Bardi’s “Extracted”

Preface. I’ve reworded/shortened some of the wording at times from this excellent book. Here are 7 other posts from this great book: Mining: Waste, Pollution, Destruction Ugo Bardi predictions of the future Minerals and War Minerals: Natural gas Minerals: Coal … Continue reading

Posted in Chemicals, Coal Ash, Mercury, Mining, Nuclear, Pollution, Ugo Bardi | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Minerals & Energy from Ugo Bardi’s “Extracted”

Preface. This is a small section of Ugo Bardi’s excellent book “Extracted”. His most important observation is that: “The limits to mineral extraction are not limits of quantity; they are limits of energy. Extracting minerals takes energy, and the more … Continue reading

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Minerals and War from Ugo Bardi’s “Extracted”

Preface. This is an extract from Ugo Bardi’s book “Extracted”.  He makes the case that once we were able to forge metal weapons was when predatory nations began to invade one another to gain resources like coal to make more … Continue reading

Posted in Elements: Critical, Elements: Precious, Mining, Peak Coal, Peak Oil, Ugo Bardi, War | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off on Minerals and War from Ugo Bardi’s “Extracted”