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Modeling of Peak Phosphorus: A Study of Bottlenecks and Implications for Future Production
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Earth Sciences, Department of Earth Sciences, Global Energy Systems.
2013 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (professional degree), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Today's modern agriculture is totally dependent on phosphorus to sustain their large yields. Several studies have recently expressed a concern for a future phosphorus deficiency. These studies are based on data for estimated reserves which have been increased with more than a fourfold since 2010. Some argue that these concerns are unfounded, despite the fact that only Morocco account for the bulk of these new reserves. This report provides new forecast for the world phosphorus production based on the new available reserve data. These forecasts are using bell shaped curve models to examine how individual countries' future production of phosphate rock affects a global production peak. Estimates of the size of several reserves are

highly uncertain and it is therefore difficult to make an accurate forecast of future phosphorus extraction.

Despite this uncertainty, a global production peak is likely to occur within this century. The global production will depend largely on China and Morocco's production as they hold a large share of the reserves and the current production. China's production will probably peak in 10-20 years at current production trend. It is uncertain if Morocco can increase production enough to replace China's production in the future. It is not likely that Morocco will be able to produce as much as would be required to meet the highest scenarios. This is mainly due to a number of bottlenecks in production such as water scarcity, increasing proportion of impurities and a decreasing concentration of phosphorus in the phosphate rock.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. , 65 p.
UPTEC W, ISSN 1401-5765 ; 13011
Keyword [en]
Phosphate rock, Peak Phosphorus, Reserves, Production, Curve fitting
National Category
Mineral and Mine Engineering
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-205108OAI: diva2:640572
Educational program
Master Programme in Environmental and Water Engineering
2013-04-24, Norrlands 1, Geocentrum, Villav. 16, Uppsala, 08:06 (Swedish)
Available from: 2013-08-23 Created: 2013-08-14 Last updated: 2013-09-16Bibliographically approved

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