[LINK] China Blocks Vital Exports to Japan - or not?

Richard Chirgwin rchirgwin at ozemail.com.au
Sun Sep 26 07:58:37 EST 2010


  On 25/09/10 6:41 PM, Fernando Cassia wrote:
> On Sat, Sep 25, 2010 at 1:12 AM, Tom Koltai<tomk at unwired.com.au>  wrote:
>> Whether or not China is blocking vital exports, There is a lesson for
>> Australia in China's management of their raw rare minerals....
>> i.e.: the para that states:
>>>> But no ban has been  imposed on the
>>>> export to Japan of semi-processed alloys that combine rare earths
>>>> with other materials, the officials said. China has been trying to
>>>> expand its alloy industry so as to create higher-paying jobs in
>>>> mining areas, instead of exporting raw materials for initial
>>>> processing.
>> What a shame that we don't insist to our trading partners that the raw
>> ore must be processed prior to export.
>> Think of the jobs that we could create.
> Am I the only one who sees the risk of relying on "rare" minerals for
> advanced, and at the same time disposable technology?. If all those
> rare minerals end up on landfills, what are we going to use when we
> run out of them? Dig landfills and re-mine them for recycling?.
>
> Certainly this is not sustainable...
>
> "rare earth minerals" are called "rare" for a reason...
>
> :-(
Actually, most of them aren't particularly "rare". They were thought so 
back when someone coined the term.

They're more difficult and expensive to extract and process (my reading, 
IANA minerologist).

But I do think we need to strongly promote the recycling of objects that 
use "rare" earths.

Richard
> FC
>
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