The Earth Is Running Out of Sand and It Could Cause a Global Crisis
The Earth Is Running Out of Sand and It Could Cause a Global Crisis

Follow by Email
Much of the world’s construction is reliant on sand, and we’re running out of it. What could that mean next? Skyscrapers of the Future Will Be Engineered to Copy Nature - Read More: Construction: limit China's sand mining “Sand mining in China has been massively stepped up over several decades to make the concrete and cement needed for the country's boom in urbanization infrastructure. The scale of this activity in the Yangtze River basin, for example, has destroyed crucial spawning, feeding and rearing grounds for its aquatic organisms, contributing to the demise of unique species.” Why there is a shortage of sand “Sand is in high demand. In some parts of the world, people are going to increasingly great lengths to get their hands on the golden grains. A ‘sand mafia’ in India intimidates locals in order to extract and transport the material.” Sand mining: the global environmental crisis you’ve probably never heard of “The global urbanisation boom is devouring colossal amounts of sand – the key ingredient of concrete and asphalt. Shanghai, China’s financial centre, has exploded in the last 20 years. The city has added 7 million new residents since 2000, raising its population to more than 23 million.” ____________________ Elements is more than just a science show. It’s your science-loving best friend, tasked with keeping you updated and interested on all the compelling, innovative and groundbreaking science happening all around us. Join our passionate hosts as they help break down and present fascinating science, from quarks to quantum theory and beyond. Seeker explains every aspect of our world through a lens of science, inspiring a new generation of curious minds who want to know how today’s discoveries in science, math, engineering and technology are impacting our lives, and shaping our future. Our stories parse meaning from the noise in a world of rapidly changing information. Visit the Seeker website Elements on Facebook - Subscribe now! Seeker on Twitter Trace Dominguez on Twitter Seeker on Facebook Seeker Special thanks to Amy Shira Teitel for hosting and writing this episode of Seeker! Check Amy out on Twitter:


Master Therion : Desert sand can't be used to make concrete? Is that a rumor or is there concrete evidence?

Vasectomy Fail : I don't like sand. It's coarse and rough and irritating and it gets everywhere.

Spudz : Anakin would be happy

Jet C : How to become a billionaire: Step 1: Make desert sand usable for concrete Step 2: ??? Step 3: Profit $$$

Xsinar : Dubai: "Sand, Sand everywhere but not a grain to use"

Guru Mage : This is so sand :(

Software Man : It's amazing how people in the desert never starve because of all the sand which is there

TheJegkkon : Seems like every week there is a new "crisis"

Suryansh Tagore : Aaaaahh..This explains the rising Sand Mafia in India

Alex McCabe : China creates several huge islands out of sand using huge sand drudges. 2 years later: *Lets talk about the sand crisis*

Jeffrey Koelewijn : Instead of concrete you can use hempcrete, mycelium, ferrock or ashcrete and more will be found out. And maybe if desert sand can't be used to make building materials, maybe it can be used or is even ideal for something else.

k m archery : I lost count how many times she said sand .

Random Weirdo : NO MORE SANDCASTLES!??!???

Patrix : "I don't like sand. It's coarse and rough and irritating and it gets everywhere" Pretty sure Ani would approve a sandless planet

priTam : Evry boxer give up ur sand bags

Pop Cap CS : We're running out of sand so it's time to use plastic as a shelter to reduce pollution.

Aayush Pokharel : Sand is the villain of spider man 💪🏻💪🏻

Evil Otto : Not sure challenges faced in building our next super megalopolis warrant a "global crisis" tag. Kinda cheapens next week's global crisis

Mizu ti : Seriously, just figure out a better use for the desert sands, and you'll end up 'killing two birds with one...grain of sand' -because it'll also help the deserts stop growing and BEING SO DAMN USELESS. -sincerely, someone who isn't impressed.

Feynstein 100 : In case anyone's wondering, desert sand can't be used for concrete because the particles are very spherical. This means that instead of interlocking with each other, they slide past one another. Hence the sand's structural properties are very poor. As for why the particles are so rounded, that's because the desert has existed for so long that any irregularities in the particles' shape has been eroded away by constant motion because of the wind (analogous to how pebbles at the bottom of a river are generally rounded). Source: am a civil engineer EDIT: It's not that desert sand *can't* be used for making concrete. It can. However, we prefer not to because the concrete would be much weaker than that which uses coarse sand.

Nathan Jones : Anakin will be relieved

Groobs G. : I dunno, cause whenever I play Minecraft I always get way too much sand... so maybe do a little more research next time.

dapwn3ritswatido : you know what this map needs?..... it needs more sand! About TWO cubic tons of it.

Dʀᴇᴡ FX : Is it because of Avengers Infinity war? Nah what ever!

Elyy Skill : I hope Mars brings new materials for concrete. It should be possible honestly. Im living in 2772 btw

Ally of Darkness Sameer : 6th Nice vid though

Dr.Pepper YouTube. Trust me, it is real one : Good. I hate sand. It's course, rough, and it gets everywhere

Fact Park : Life noggin also made a video about this topic.☺️

Zach Ryder : That's what they get for muzzling Appa

Aayush Pokharel : 2 minutes of silence for people who says there first✌🏼

H&B MOVIES : Everyday there are new Crises

Michæl Gilbert Clements : Cutting down trees to build with wood is more enviromently friendly, now? Well of course it is welcome to 2018!

Some Thing : When are you guys going to look a little further on this? This isn't a NEW global crisis, it's the cause of a way longer crisis. It's just a matter of connecting the dots. "Global warming" (read: climate change) isn't the cause of the "raising" sea levels, it's the mining of sand which causes the beach to retreat to even the levels out. This is indeed exactly what's making the islands disappear. Watch the documentary called 'Sand Wars' and you'll get what I mean. The dots? You'll have to connect themselves (for once).

AlphaOmega : Naa, we’ll just figure out how to process all that other sand into something usable. No big deal.

Nothing Special... : Thank God Spiderman turned to Sandman though

DANDAN THE DANDAN : I'm gonna keep a bottle of sand at home and wait for it to become as expensive as a diamond!

Gears Starting : I wonder if anything could be done to the sand that is not as ideal for construction--such as the sand of the Sahara desert--to make it more fit for construction purposes.

big mike : Customary Amy is hot comments.

Knighty Knight : Sand is a CO2 sink that absorbs CO2 and keeps it there, saving our atmosphere from more CO2 exposure. Using sand for construction is also harming the ozone layer increasing global warming.

TaiStar : WE'RE RUNNING OUT OF SAND!!! I live in the desert so this seems hard to believe. So, what Your saying is, "I'm rich"

Soum : The girl explains beautifully. How sand that matters differs from ordinary sand , consequences of lack of sand , solutions. Production team is good too!

Mikkel Hansen : Man Anakin would be happy to hear this.

Gin : Take a drink everytime she says "sand"

ValiousTV : Yawn... it's like saying 'we are running out salt in the oceans'. Also it's silica sand that used in cement and concrete.

Yashas Vasudev : What are we NOT "Running out" of? ;_;

Nothingfunny : We could always artificially make sand. But as a whole everything is running out on earth, We are destined for mars.

Nocturnus Schwartstein : Because humans want more than they'll ever need. Their wants must be quelled, or so risk becoming needs.


forestsoceansmusic : Hey! It's the beautiful Vintage Space girl! Thanks for the 'heads up' on this issue.