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UA Lends Mining Expertise to Consumer Product Sustainability

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UA Lends Mining Expertise to Consumer Product Sustainability

Feb. 22, 2013
UA Lends Mining Expertise to Consumer Product Sustainability

The research will be led by University Distinguished Professor Mary Poulton, director of the Institute for Mineral Resources and head of the UA department of mining and geological engineering.

The UN estimates that global population will reach 9 billion by 2050, putting ever increasing pressure on us to make consumer products more sustainable.

The UA's metals extraction research will help the consortium create its first raw material dossier, which will be available to groups involved in reducing the environmental impact of sourcing and manufacturing consumer goods.

"Our work will help provide more information on the sustainability factors related to the extraction and processing of several different minerals that are used to make many popular consumer products," Poulton said.

"As we try to make more educated choices about the products we buy and use, it is important to understand the materials used in those products and how and where those materials were made."

The Lowell Institute for Mineral Resources is ideally positioned for this role, and has the depth of expertise to tackle challenges critically important to modern mining, Poulton said. The institute can disseminate solutions by training industry professionals through onsite courses, field training and distance learning.

The institute is composed of more than 120 university researchers collaborating across 23 disciplines on pioneering projects to advance sustainable development of mineral resources. It partners with industry experts around the globe and has educated professionals in 27 countries to improve management across the entire mining cycle.

The Sustainability Consortium is an independent organization dedicated to making consumer products sustainable. The 90-plus organizations that comprise the consortium's membership have combined revenues of about $1.5 trillion and employ more than 57 million people worldwide.