Feasibility assessment of sustainability scenarios based on the estimation of metal demand (Case Analysis of Long-Term Energy Scenarios Focusing on the Risk of Copper Depletion)

Yusuke Kishita, Yuta Inoue, Hideki Kobayashi, Shinichi Fukushige, Yasushi Umeda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

There are a number of long-term scenarios toward envisioning a sustainable society, particularly a low-carbon society. While such scenarios often assume various low-carbon technologies with an aim to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, it is unclear whether the scenarios are feasible from the viewpoint of resource depletion. For example, copperis a critical base metal since introducing low-carbon technologies (e.g., electric vehicle and wind power generator) may induce copper consumption. This paper proposes a method for estimating long-term metal demand based on sustainability scenarios. Our method proposes an integrated model that evaluates world metal demand from two different perspectives - (1) economic development and (2) dissemination of new products, e.g., electric vehicles. As a case study, the feasibility of a long-term energy scenario is assessedfrom the viewpoint of copper depletion. Results illustrate that the cumulative copper consumption exceeds the copper reserved in the earth by around 2040. The increase in copper consumption results mainly from world economic growth led by developing countries, while the dissemination of electric vehicles has a minor impact on the consumption increase.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3221-3233
Number of pages13
JournalNihon Kikai Gakkai Ronbunshu, C Hen/Transactions of the Japan Society of Mechanical Engineers, Part C
Volume79
Issue number805
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Copper
  • Electric Vehicle
  • Low-Carbon Society
  • Metal Demand
  • Resource Depletion
  • Sustainability Scenario

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

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