Environmental risks and challenges of anthropogenic metals flows and cycles

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Metals and their compounds are part of the fabric of modern society due to their unique properties, such as their conductivity, malleability, hardness, lustre, or recyclability. These properties impart a variety of functionality in various present products as well as future sustainability enabling solutions. Most of the highly-valued products of modern technology, such as computers, MRI scanners, aircraft engines, and satellites would be impossible without metals. Nonetheless, their production and use, as is true for all re-sources that we extract and use, are associated with potential environmental impacts. In this report, an assessment is made of the literature on metals flows and cycles in nature and in society, the way they are connected, and the potential impacts related to them. Four areas of attention emerge from this assessment as important information for a sustainable metals management.

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United Nations Environment Programme
Data de publicació
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