U.S. Geological Survey
Fact Sheet 53-03
June 2003 - Online Version 1.0
USGS Mineral Resources Program
The Global Mineral Resource Assessment Project
By Klaus J. Schulz and Joseph A. Briskey
All nations continually face decisions involving the supply and utilization of raw materials, substitution of one resource for another, competing land uses, and the environmental consequences of resource development. Global use of mineral resources will continue to increase for the foreseeable future because of the continuing increase in global population and the efforts to improve living standards worldwide. In today's global economy, a nation's economic security depends on access to adequate mineral resource supplies from a variety of domestic and international sources.
No global shortages of nonfuel mineral resources are expected in the near future; however, the growing demand for mineral resources requires continued exploration and development of as-yet-undiscovered mineral deposits. Informed planning and decisions concerning sustainable resource development require a long-term global perspective and an integrated approach to land-use, resource, and environmental management. This integrated approach, in turn, requires that unbiased information be available on the global distribution of identified and especially undiscovered mineral resources, the economic factors influencing their development, and the environmental consequences of their exploitation.