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Public Lecture: Close to the edge? Approaching new frontiers for mineral and metal resources

14 - 14 February 2018
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Event type:
Evening Meeting, Lecture
Organised by:
2018 Year of Resources, 1. Geological Society Events
The Geological Society (Burlington House)
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Population growth, urbanisation and technological transitions are creating increasing demand for minerals and metals. These powerful drivers are likely to sustain this growing material demand up to and beyond the middle of the century.  Supply from existing mines can only satisfy demand up to a certain point, after which commodity prices will rise and the market will look for new sources of supply. Commodity price increases also drive innovations in science and technology. These innovations will unlock new metal and mineral resources, pushing development toward the frontiers of possibility.

This lecture will explore some of these new resource frontiers and examine the technological, economic, social and environmental factors which may encourage or constrain development.  Throughout human history, mining of minerals and metals has always taken place at geographical and technological frontiers, close to the limit of what is possible. Unprecedented material demand has a strong correlation with human-induced environmental change. Are moves toward these new resource frontiers pushing us toward the edge, to the environmental limits of our planet, or do some directions offer the possibility of a more sustainable future?


Andrew Bloodworth  British Geological Survey, Science Director for Minerals and Waste

As BGS Science Director for Minerals and Waste, Andrew is responsible for all BGS research related to mineral resources and the geological disposal of radioactive waste. Andrew’s own interests include resource security, critical minerals and the impact of mining on the developing world. He has worked extensively in Africa and was formerly Mining Advisor to the UK Department for International Development. Andrew has been a Fellow since 1995 and a Chartered Geologist. He is also Associate Member of the Royal Town Planning Institute, and a member of the UK Minerals Forum, the Confederation of British Industry Minerals Group and the Mineral Resources Expert Group of EuroGeosurveys. 

Registration: Bookings are now Open 

The Geological Society Public Lecture Programme is now be listed on

Matinee Lecture - Book your Ticket(s) here

14.30     Tea and coffee served in the lower library

15.00     Lecture 

15.45     Questions and answers

16.00     Lecture ends and guests depart

Evening Lecture - Book your Ticket(s) here 

17.30 Tea and coffee served in the lower library

18.00 Lecture begins

18.45 Questions and answers

19.00 Lecture ends and there is a short drinks reception in the lower library

20.00 Close 

Live Streaming:

You can watch the Lectures live at 3pm and 6pm. The Link to watch live will be available closer to the lecture. 

All past lectures can be viewed online on our Past Meeting Resources Page.

If you wish to join the mailing list, please email Angela George.

Geolsoc Contact

Sarah Woodcock

Geological Society of London
Burlington House
Piccadilly, London
United Kingdom

The Geological Society

The Geological Society
Burlington House

Tel: 020 7434 9944