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Rare-Earth Metals Shortage Could Slow Green Innovation

priusengineNeodymium, lanthanum, dysprosium. They don't have the same ring to them as gold and viagra online no prescription platinum, but they could very well be the high-cost, rare elements that define our environmental future. Neodymium, for example is essential to order propecia pill electric motors in hybrid and full-electric vehicles and is also used in the generators in wind and tidal turbines.

It's a sign of the times. As we continue to use our brains to figure out better ways to create and use electricity, we need more and more rare metals that, ten years ago, were hardly used at all. Indeed, in the next few years, demand for rare earth metals will likely outstrip supply by about 40,000 tons. Unless, of course, a lot of buy discount viagra online new supply comes online very quickly.

Most of the world's rare-earth metals come from China, but China is starting to use more and more of its supply while exporting less to the rest of the world. Toyota, with their 70% market share in hybrid vehicles, is starting to get worried. Every Prius electric engine uses 1 kg of neodymium and every Prius battery uses 10 kg of lanthanum. Of course, those numbers will get higher as Toyota expands the range of the car.

Different batteries with different chemistries might use more or less of certain metals, but there's no doubt that new sources are going to have to which is better viagra or cialis be opened up for production of these rare metals. Already mines in Canada and California are slated to open or expand for the production of rare-earth metals. Of course, that's mixed news for the environment. Mining is, of course, extremely destructive to local areas, but the elements being mined could lead to a significantly more stable planet overall. Of course, the choice is likely one our economy will make for us.

One can hope that these problems will be solved the same way they were created, with our brains, and not with our mining rigs. Battery chemistry that uses no lanthanum isn't far off. Though it's hard to imagine an engine or generator that doesn't use neodymium's magnetic properties. But one can always hope.

Via Reuters

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Comments (17)Add Comment
There is only one cure for this problem, Low-rated comment [Show]
written by T, September 01, 2009
People always go on generic viagra soft and on about population, but there's a second factor: consumption. One average American is worth dozens of Indians in terms of footprint.
written by Golmekker, September 01, 2009
Yah. When China cuts off their line of credit to the US the consumption will stop abruptly.

Bring it on!
It's worse than that
written by joe, September 01, 2009
more like scores as in close to approved viagra pharmacy 80 to 1 by some estimates. How many billions could live comfortably on the cialis canada illegal buy resources that 300 million Americans consume? it should make ya think!
We should be looking at bio magnetic technologies
written by Helmunn, September 01, 2009
Permanent magnets are not the solution, they are part of the problem.
Bio Magnetic?
written by Just Me, September 01, 2009
Helmunn, please explain what you mean about Bio Magnetic technologies as a solution.

A google search returns pseudo science related to medical related pseudo science.
written by Jonathan, September 01, 2009
Though it's hard to imagine an engine or generator that doesn't use neodymium's magnetic properties.

Um, you could abandon permanent magnets in favor of electromagnets. You know, that way any conductor at all (but most commonly copper) could be used instead of neodymium.

A few seconds on Wikipedia indicates that AC traction motors (as found in the GM EV1, Toyota RAV4 EV and Tesla Roadster) don't use permanent magnets at all.
Population controls?
written by Mike, September 01, 2009
You people wishing that H1N1 or something else will depopulate the world, should do one of cialis woman two things; either wake up and realize that you are human with a will to survive(something that the rest of us figured out and all know that other people share) or kill yourselves. Stop being part of the problem. Just stop eating and turn yourself off.

It's truly disgusting to hear people wishing for some calamity to kill other people. Too many people on Earth, fine, let's figure out a way to make Earth support more people, or figure out a way to get people living off of Earth. I'd happily support a Earth depopulation regime that simply moved folks to Mars or some other planet. Of course it may be 100 or more like 200 years before we could do such a thing, but a goal is a goal. In the meantime, we should just keep living as cleanly as possible. Mining isn't evil, and if you've ever been to we choice cialis brand name Germany, you can see how it can be done properly.
Population controls?
written by Golmekker, September 01, 2009
Humans have no more 'right' to life than do bacteria. All organisms on this planet strive to replicate and have a 'will to survive', so populations usually tend to explode their numbers. Population explosions are traditionally managed in nature by population crashes - sometimes extinctions. Why should it be any different for humans?

Mining is rarely done 'properly'. Look at the profoundly idiotic mountain top coal mining of the Americans in West Virginia, or the massive open cut mining operations in Australia, or the environmental disaster which is the OK Tedi mine in Papua New Guinea. The list of mining done improperly is huge.

A better solution...?
written by Ieshua, September 01, 2009
As has already been implied above by others, simple living will become the generic viagra rxmeds sensible solution as simply shifting our HUGE consumption (as americans) from dirty to clean (tailpipe) doesnt mean much overall. As I see it, if someone is overeating on the WORST food you can imagen, they hill be healthier by eating good quality food, but over eating is overeating... is over consumption. Its an addiction, one we as americas will break ourselves of, or be broken of.
written by John Rowell, September 01, 2009
I don't like mining one bit - it's bad for the environment and hazardous for the miners - but when you look at the big picture it's a choice of a neodymium mine or huge polluting coal mines, and the choice is easy.
written by MD, September 02, 2009
The Chinese are the #1 supply simply because the USA stopped mining the materials when the price of the materials plummeted.

There are plans to get USA back into the #1 position, although there are sites in Western Canada and in Australia that also contain the viagra to order metals.

No I do not work for them...

PS - the mine is already established, its been there since the 40's... they just need to pump out the water, 95 million gallons (360 million litres) of it.
written by Manu, September 03, 2009
I heard from a friend that the key for this rare-metal shortage is non other than the Chinese. They are largest producers.
written by Miles, September 03, 2009
What is it with soe people that there has to be whining about everything? The critism about mining reminds me of the one about making paper out of i use it non prescription viagra trees: "Oh noez we are cutting down trees to fullfill our selfish desire to write!". Never mind that we actually grow those trees especially to be made into paper and there is no rain forest or old forest tree going into it, ever.
Or the bitching about wild fires "Oh noez the precious nature is burning down!!!!111one". Never mind that it's part of the natural cycle and that a lot of plants even need it and be hindering the fires we make everything worse. (I actually watched a lot of hulu this week and I saw a lot of stupid anti-wildfire commercials)

It's jsut the same with mining. You won't see a trace of even the cialis online in usa most destructive mining in 50-100 years. Plants will grow back, animals will follow. Don't piss yourself because something will look bad for 50 years.

Besides it doesn't even have to be this way. Here in germany mining is mostly done through tunneling. The enviroment doesn't even notice it. And if it's done with holes in the ground those are filled up with water when done and you actually have new habitats for a bunch of different species (there is still more than enough wood to go around). I know a few in my proximity that are actually bird sanctuarys.

So really mining might have a short term negative effect on a really small area, but nature will clean that right up and if we can save the panet with it: great! ^^
Dig Baby Dig
written by Driver8, September 10, 2009
This is my personal belief from my education in human history.Most people never see or make the connections.The sole purpose the human race has is to dig holes in the ground and chop down trees.This is a very simplistic view.What did are nomadic tribes men in any culture do to survive.Dug holes for fire pits, water,food,burials,stones, waste and traps.They also cut down trees for basically the same reasons.So I say dig baby dig!We are alive now and what we pull out of the ground can be used for future generations.
written by Natasha, September 10, 2009
Humans are creatures of habit. We tend not to change what we do unless something drastic causes us to soft tab cialis do so. So ... what needs to happen in order for us to give up our dependency on such things as rare metals? We could make a contentious choice not to drive, but we come across another dilemma... what would be the incentive? Protecting our largest asset the earth doesn't seem to be enough. Where's the immediate gratification that we Americans cling so desperately to? It's not just the cars that cause this? Maybe its our way of life? We worry about getting to work on time, getting home with enough time to spend with the levitra professional 20 mg family, hurry the kids off the practice, run to the store to pick up things for dinner... packing our days with so many things, that to just try! rx online levitra the typical American it would seem impossible to do anything else other than drive a car. Though one mining may be better than another for now, I would have to challenge Americans to think more about addressing the root issues that cause our dependencies and not just rely on a better band aid for the wound.
written by Robert, October 24, 2009
Hey miles it takes thousands , millions if not even billions years to restore our punny reserve if rare metals... Setting quotas are fine cuz we will be forced to use better and cleaner matterials to resolve our problems.

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