(05-02-2013 11:40 PM)bbeljefe Wrote: We really won't ever run out of iron reserves for the same reason we won't run out of oil reserves. At some point, the cost of harvesting will outweigh the value to the market and before we reach that tipping point, an alternative will be created. And the neat thing about iron products is that they are recyclable. In fact, they are and have been being recycled for so long now that the cost of recycling them is economical (which can't be said for a lot of things). As the cost of harvesting new iron ore goes up, recyclers will pay more for scrap iron and as such people will be further incentivized to recycle steel and iron in lieu of simply discarding it. Not to mention, just like happens now, there will be more people rummaging through dumpsters looking for the ever more valuable scrap metals.
Another thing to consider is that we're already producing composite materials that are both lighter and stronger than steel and as the cost of steel increases, the cost of these materials will fall.
He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how.
Oh and a thought just grazed my brain... if we're worried about running out of consumed metals, we need to look at silver. It's a lot more expensive to harvest and to recycle than is iron.
Alright you got me but I was assuming at the very least the world would need more to support itself. I mean common can we really match the demand for all these various resources that are bound to run out one day whether its 100 years or a few years I am sure whatever is found would have to reach a point of depletion.....then again its not impossible for our efficiency/evolving technology to reach such a high point that we could practically use whats left in our world next to forever.