Mining & Materials

The topic area of mining and materials covers the extraction and use of substances for human purposes and the related impacts and consequences, such as pollution. It includes mining and resource extraction practices and impacts in all locations, including off-shore and into water bodies and the atmosphere. It includes materials in all forms from elemental (overlapping with chemistry) to manufactured products and side- or waste-materials. It includes industrial processes, material and waste management. It includes practices and policies related to mining and materials, including drivers like consumption patterns and resource economics. 

  • Tool for Measuring Indoor Air Pollutants Featured News Article Tool for Measuring Indoor Air Pollutants Tool for Measuring Indoor Air Pollutants

    ?Main Image: Inside the test chamber, the thin-film sample (measuring 6 centimeters on a side), which has been suffused with vapors of a common VOC, releases gas emissions at a... More »

  • Limestone Featured Article Limestone Limestone

      Limestone  is a sedimentary rock whose chief mineral component is calcite (calcium carbonate: CaCO3). Limestone can be formed by precipitation of calcite... More »

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Malaysia Natural Resources Last Updated on 2014-06-11 16:41:01 The natural resources of Malaysia include water resources, energy, fisheries, forests, air resources, agriculture and minerals. An outline of these topics is presented below linked to articles within the Encyclopedia of Earth: Malaysia- FAO Information System on Water and Agriculture Malaysia Water Resources and Freshwater Ecosystems Factsheet Water Profile of Malaysia Malaysia Summary Factsheet Energy profile of Malaysia South China Sea Sulu Sea Celebes Sea Malaysia - Forests, Grasslands, and Drylands Factsheet Forests of Borneo Borneo peat swamp forests Borneo lowland rainforests Borneo montane rainforests Sundaland heath forests Sunda Shelf mangroves Peninsular Malaysia peat swamp forests Peninsular Malaysia montane rainforests Peninsular Malaysia lowland rainforests Climate of Malaysia Malaysia- FAO Information System on Water and... More »
Biochar: Concept to Sequester Carbon Last Updated on 2014-06-11 15:45:52 Biochar is a charcoal produced under high temperatures using crop residues, animal manure, or any type of organic waste material. Depending on the feedstock, biochar may look similar to potting soil or to a charred substance. The combined production and use of biochar is considered a carbon-negative process, meaning that it removes carbon from the atmosphere. Biochar has multiple potential environmental benefits, foremost the potential to sequester carbon in the soil for hundreds to thousands of years at an estimate. Studies suggest that crop yields can increase as a result of applying biochar as a soil amendment. Some contend that biochar has value as an immediate climate change mitigation strategy. Scientific experiments suggest that greenhouse gas emissions are reduced significantly with biochar application to crop fields. Obstacles that may stall rapid adoption of biochar... More »
Uranium Last Updated on 2013-12-15 23:42:25 Uranium is a radioactive element that occurs naturally in low concentrations (a few parts per million) in soil, rock, and surface and groundwater. It is the heaviest naturally occurring element, with an atomic number of 92. Uranium in its pure form is a silver-colored heavy metal that is nearly twice as dense as lead and is pyrophoric when finely divided. Uranium exhibits three crystallographic modifications as follows: alpha --(688°C)→ beta --(776°C)→ gamma. It is a little softer than steel, and is attacked by cold water in a finely divided state. It is malleable, ductile, and slightly paramagnetic. In air, the metal becomes coated with a layer of oxide. Acids dissolve the metal, but it is unaffected by alkalis. Previous Element: Protactinium Next Element:... More »
Antarctica Last Updated on 2013-10-03 22:02:28 The continent of Antarctica is located almost entirely south of the Antarctic Circle, (66.5 degrees south Latitude). Only the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula and the fringes of Wilkes Land protrude north of that line. Roughly centered on the geographic South Pole (coordinates: 90° 00' S, 0° 00' E.), it's total area of Antarctica is 14 million sq km (it's ice-free land area is 280,000 sq km while about 13.72 million sq km is ice-covered). It is the fifth largest continent, following Asia, Africa, North America, and South America, containing 8.9% of the Earth's land area; and it is larger than Australia and the subcontinent of Europe. It is slightly less than 1.5 times the size of the United States.   The antarctic coastline measures about 17,968 km. All of Antarctica utilizes New Zealand Time. Speculation over the existence of an "unknown... More »
Industrial uses of lead Last Updated on 2013-09-17 22:29:34 The Toxics Use Reduction Institute is a Massachusetts government research entity that has used the unique usage data from the state pollution and prevention program to create selected chemical fact sheets. The following is from the Turi Lead Fact sheet. In 2004, Massachusetts manufacturers used more than 3.5 million pounds of lead and lead compounds. The total global industrial consumption of lead in 2003 was estimated to be 15.1 billion pounds, and the U.S. consumption of lead in 2003 was estimated to be 3.06 billion pounds. The greatest use of lead is in lead-acid batteries, however lead-acid batteries are not manufactured in Massachusetts. Lead has a low melting temperature (327° C) for a metal and is extremely malleable, which enables easy casting, shaping, and joining of lead products. Lead can be recycled as a secondary raw material from lead-acid batteries and... More »