Physical assessment of the mineral capital of a nation: the case of an importing and an exporting country
Resumen: Intensified mineral consumption and reserve depletion means that it is becoming increasingly important for policymakers to account for and manage national mineral capital. Exergy replacement costs (ERC), an indicator based on the second law of thermodynamics, provides a physical value of mineral loss. When only a unit mass analysis is used, the role of scarcer minerals, such as gold, is obscured. ERC can identify those minerals which are most critical and more difficult to re-concentrate. This paper compares the mineral depletion of that of Colombia and Spain for 2011, both in mass and ERC terms. The Colombian mineral balance for that year is predominately based on fossil fuel extraction and exports, whilst Spain produced industrial minerals but relied heavily upon metals and fossil fuel imports. Using exergy replacement costs, an economic analysis was carried out to determine the impact of mineral extraction, in monetary terms, should the cost of re-concentrating such minerals be taken into account. In 2011, the GDP derived from the extractive sectors of either country did not compensate the mineral resource loss, meaning that mineral patrimony is not being properly evaluated.
Idioma: Inglés
DOI: 10.3390/resources4040857
Año: 2015
Publicado en: Resources 4, 4 (2015), 857-870
ISSN: 2079-9276

Factor impacto SCIMAGO:

Financiación: info:eu-repo/grantAgreement/ES/MINECO/ENE2014-59933-R
Tipo y forma: Article (Published version)
Área (Departamento): Máquinas y Motores Térmicos (Departamento de Ingeniería Mecánica)

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