About the blog: What Things Are Made Of


The United States relies on imports for dozens of commodities in everyday use. Often enough, that reliance is 100%. In this book I aim to provide awareness of the hidden geology and mineralogy behind common things, and to develop an appreciation for the global resource distribution that underpins our society. While concerns about oil import reliance are in the news every day, our needs for other minerals are comparable and are typically unknown even to technologically aware Americans.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Everyone has an agenda

Everyone has an agenda. I do too, and because of my background as an oil explorationist it would be reasonable to think I might come down on the side of drilling, mining, and exploiting. Those things are important to modern life – but as a geologist, I also love the earth. I would call myself an environmentally sensitive resource explorer, even though some would say that’s an oxymoron.

In the introduction to What Things Are Made Of, I say the book is not intended to be a polemic against the mining industry – nor does it ignore the environmental consequences of mining. The point is that mined materials ARE used in incredible ways, and the book is a showcase for the necessity of mineral resources and the world's interdependence on their irregular distribution.

The National Mining Association promotes and lobbies for the mining industry. But they also have a great section, Minerals Make Life, whose message is essentially the same as mine: that everything takes minerals, that modern life would be impossible – not just inconvenient, but flat-out impossible – without them.

1 comment:

Lucinda Bilya said...

Powerful post this time! I like it. One of these days, I am going to have a job again and I will definitely buy your book.

"Environmentally Sensitive Resource Explorer" Great Title! ESRE

I don't think of that as an oxymoron at all.