Global Environmental Health Impacts of Rare Earth Metals: Insights for Research and Policy Making in Africa
2. Materials and Methods
3. Background History of Rare Earth Metals
4. Analysis and Exploration of Rare Earth Metals
5. Applications of Rare Earth Metals
6. Environmental Challenges Associated with Mining Rare Earth Metals
7. Impact of Rare Earth Metals on Global Health
7.1. Impacts on Environmental Health
7.2. Impacts on Human Health
7.3. Impacts on Animal Health
8. REMs in Africa: The Imperative for Greater Research Coverage
9. Planetary Health: A Holistic Approach for Addressing REMs Health Hazards
- Promoting sustainable mining practices: encourage the adoption of sustainable practices that minimize environmental impact, such as reducing waste and conserving water and renewable energy sources. This can help reduce the environmental impact of REM extraction and processing in Africa.
- Increasing efficiency and recycling: Increase efficiency in the use of REMs by designing products that use fewer rare-earth materials or recycling existing resources. This can help reduce the demand for new REM extraction and processing.
- Encouraging research and innovation: explore alternative materials that can be used in place of REMs in high-tech products. For example, research is being conducted on using organic polymers instead of REMs in magnets . This can help reduce the demand for new extraction and processing of REMs in Africa.
- Promoting ecosystem health: protect and promote ecosystem health by reducing pollution and preserving biodiversity. This can help to mitigate the health impacts of REMs on both humans and animals.
- Engaging local communities: Engage local communities and indigenous people in the decision-making processes related to the extraction and processing of REMs to ensure that their voices are heard and their rights are respected.
- Increasing transparency and accountability: Increase transparency in the REM supply chain to ensure that companies operate ethically and in accordance with environmental and social regulations. This should include ensuring that local communities are properly consulted and that their rights are respected.
- Conducting comprehensive environmental assessment: conduct a comprehensive environmental assessment before, during, and after REM mining and processing to identify and mitigate potential health and environmental risk. This should include an assessment of the potential impacts on local ecosystems and the health of nearby communities.
- Developing local capacity: support the development of local capacity for REM extraction and processing to create more jobs and economic opportunities for African communities. This can help to promote local development, regional, and inter-continental partnerships, and increase the value of raw materials produced in Africa.
- Enforcing environmental and social regulations: This ensures that companies operating in Africa are held accountable for their actions and that they operate ethically and in line with international standards.
- Raising awareness: education and promoting a pro-planetary mindset are essential components to curb the negative impact of REM accumulation in the food chain towards food safety practices.
Institutional Review Board Statement
Informed Consent Statement
Data Availability Statement
Conflicts of Interest
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Oladipo, H.J.; Tajudeen, Y.A.; Taiwo, E.O.; Muili, A.O.; Yusuf, R.O.; Jimoh, S.A.; Oladipo, M.K.; Oladunjoye, I.O.; Egbewande, O.M.; Sodiq, Y.I.; et al. Global Environmental Health Impacts of Rare Earth Metals: Insights for Research and Policy Making in Africa. Challenges 2023, 14, 20. https://doi.org/10.3390/challe14020020
Oladipo HJ, Tajudeen YA, Taiwo EO, Muili AO, Yusuf RO, Jimoh SA, Oladipo MK, Oladunjoye IO, Egbewande OM, Sodiq YI, et al. Global Environmental Health Impacts of Rare Earth Metals: Insights for Research and Policy Making in Africa. Challenges. 2023; 14(2):20. https://doi.org/10.3390/challe14020020Chicago/Turabian Style
Oladipo, Habeebullah Jayeola, Yusuf Amuda Tajudeen, Emmanuel O. Taiwo, Abdulbasit Opeyemi Muili, Rashidat Onyinoyi Yusuf, Sarat Ayomide Jimoh, Muhammad Kamaldeen Oladipo, Iyiola Olatunji Oladunjoye, Oluwaseyi Muyiwa Egbewande, Yusuff Inaolaji Sodiq, and et al. 2023. "Global Environmental Health Impacts of Rare Earth Metals: Insights for Research and Policy Making in Africa" Challenges 14, no. 2: 20. https://doi.org/10.3390/challe14020020