SME releases 2016 ‘Minerals Baby’

By |  August 29, 2016
Click to enlarge.

Click to enlarge. Photo courtesy of the Minerals Education Coalition of the Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration.

The Minerals Education Coalition (MEC) of the Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration (SME) released its 2016 “Minerals Baby,” which reflects an increase of more than 15,000 pounds per capita usage of minerals and energy fuels when compared with the 2015 statistics. MEC annually calculates the amount of minerals and energy fuels that are consumed in the average lifetime of an American born in the current year.

According to SME, the “Minerals Baby” emphasizes the dependence that every American has on the mining industry. According to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Mineral Commodity Summaries 2016, minerals remained fundamental to the U.S. economy, contributing to the real gross domestic product at several levels, including mining, processing and manufacturing finished products.

MEC used information from USGS, the National Mining Association, the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the U.S. Census Bureau and other sources to determine that the annual amount of mined resources used per capita in 2015 was 39,660 pounds. Based on this information, MEC discovered that the average American, with an average life expectancy of 78.8 years, will need 3.125 million pounds of resources to provide the products and materials they will depend on in their lifetime.

“This graphic and the message it conveys are used by a variety of audiences, from educators in K-12 classrooms, to congressional committees when considering legislative changes to policies that affect our mineral needs,” says SME Executive Director David Kanagy. “The value of this visual is that it reminds all of us of the important role that the production of minerals and energy have in our lives, our lifestyles and our standard of living. Our cars, roads and homes all started with mined materials.”

The Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration is a professional society with more than 15,000 members who represent all professions serving the mining, minerals and underground construction industries in more than 100 countries. Its goal is to advance the worldwide minerals community through information exchange and professional development.

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