Copper Bottom Lined

Posted in: Comment, News and Updates

The world worries about the supply of lithium, or rather, the lack of it, as the metal is so vital to technological innovation.  Not to mention all those Rare Earths with funny names: dysprosium, promethium, gadolinium, ytterbium, etc.  But what about that most mundane of metals, copper?  Well, I read that S&P Global, a consultancy, expects copper consumption to double by 2035.  That's in 12 years.  Double.  That's because of all those wind turbines, electric cars, electric lawnmowers, electric bread knives, electric scooters, and electric etcs.

Chile and Peru currently produce 40% of global supply, with new mines coming into being in the DRC and Mongolia.  Copper mining is never a clean process, especially as the quality of ores fall.  We are a long way off peak copper, however, just as peak oil proved to be wishful thinking by green zealots.

A recent Economist Schumpter column focuses on what it terms the coming copper crunch.  Worth a read if only to explore the sheer geo-political and socio-chemical-economic complexity of it all.

A great 6th form resource I'd say, to help youngsters recognise the tendentious fairy tales they are told by some activists with agendas.


As a postscript, BT owns a lot of copper which runs to every house in the country.  This will be worth quite a bit when it's eventually pulled out to be replaced by glass.  And there was such a copper shortage in WW II that the electrical wiring at Los Alamos had to be made of silver – which is a better conductor.

Posted in: Comment, News and Updates


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