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Global Material Resources Outlook to 2060

Economic Drivers and Environmental Consequences

image of Global Material Resources Outlook to 2060

This report presents global projections of materials use and their environmental consequences, providing a quantitative outlook to 2060 at the global, sectoral and regional levels for 61 different materials (biomass resources, fossil fuels, metals and non-metallic minerals). It explains the economic drivers determining the decoupling of economic growth and materials use, and assesses how the projected shifts in sectoral and regional economic activity influence the use of different materials. The projections include both primary and secondary materials, which provides a deeper understanding of what drives the synergies and trade-offs between extraction and recycling.

The report projects a doubling of global primary materials use between today and 2060. Population and converging per capita income growth drive the growth in materials use. However, structural change, especially in non-OECD countries, and technology improvements partially dampen that growth. Metals and non-metallic minerals are projected to grow more rapidly than other types of materials.

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Projections of recycling and secondary materials

This chapter presents the projections of recycling and secondary materials use in the central baseline scenario. The first section presents an overview of the current situation on the use of secondary materials resulting from recycling. The second section presents projections of the recycling sector and the third section illustrates the impacts for secondary materials use to 2060, focusing on the competition between processing of primary and secondary materials.

English

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