Topic:Distribution of key natural resources across the world (including South Asia and the Indian subcontinent); factors responsible for the location of primary, secondary, and tertiary sector industries in various parts of the world (including India).
1) What are a Rare Earth Minerals? Why are they strategically important? Discuss their uses from strategic, developmental and environmental perspective.(250 words)
Why this question:
China has threatened to curb the export of rare earth minerals to the US as the trade war between the world’s two largest economies escalates, The Asian country is the world’s largest producer and consumer of rare earth minerals.
Key demands of the question:
With escalating tensions between US and China, and with china wanting to limit rare earth exports to the US, it becomes imperative for us to study and analyse the context.
Discuss – This is an all-encompassing directive – you have to debate on paper by going through the details of the issues concerned by examining each one of them. You have to give reasons for both for and against arguments.
Structure of the answer:
In a few introductory lines define Rare earth minerals – Rare earth elements (REE) are a group of seventeen chemical elements that occur together in the periodic table, 15 lanthanides (Z=57 through 71), Scandium and Yttrium..
Discuss the following aspects in the answer:
- What are rare earth minerals? Why are they called as rare earth minerals?
- What is the significance of Rare Earth Elements (REE)?
- Discuss its utility in terms of – defense, strategy environment etc.
- Global Uses and Production of Rare Earth Elements
- What are the issues involved?
- Aspect of China? – why and what is the turf?
Conclude with their significance and what needs to be done to overcome the challenges involved therein.