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How much do you use?

Each person in the UK uses over ten tonnes of minerals and metals in one year, on average. This figure includes minerals commodities you use at home and a share of minerals, metals and fuels used in leisure, retail, transport, work and public facilities.

Graphics of cars, BGS©NERC

In your lifetime, this can add up to quite a lot:

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Bulk minerals

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More metals

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Average quantities of the main minerals and metals that are used in a person's lifetime in the UK at 2004 rates of consumption. The volume of the mineral, metal or fuel used depends on both the mass and density.

  tonnes     tonnes
Aggregates: Aluminium 0.694
Crushed rock 165.66 Copper 0.474
Sand and gravel 112.26 Gold 0.001
Secondary aggregates 0.06 Lead 0.394
Building stone 3.99 Magnesium 0.014
Cement 14.45 Manganese 0.151
Clays 26.75 Nickel 0.022
Coal 79.32 Phosphorus 0.022
Gypsum 4.03 Silicon 0.079
Other bulk minerals: Silver 0.002
Barytes 0.13 Steel 17.190
Feldspar 0.04 Tin 0.007
Fluorspar 0.09 Titanium 0.024
Potash 0.51 Zinc 0.312
Talc 0.09 Petroleum 103.34
Salt 6.95 Natural Gas 126.45
Silica sand 6.42

Find out more

To find out more read Mineral Matters 7: Minerals in our lives.

The Mineral Information Institute shows how much an American will consume in a lifetime. Figures are given in pounds. For comparison there are 2204.6 pounds in a tonne.