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Economics

Consumption
Aggregates are consumed in Britain in larger quantities than any other mineral and indeed, any other material. Total consumption of primary aggregates in the UK was about 225 million tonnes in 2003 with a per capita consumption of 3.3 tonnes, which is low by international standards and less than half the European average.

Aggregates demand is driven by activity in the construction industry and the economy as a whole (Aggregates in the economy). The relationship with economic activity is not simple and demand forecasting has proved to be difficult. Past forecasts have been either too high or too low.
     
The Government is committed to improving the country's built environment and transport infrastructure in order to secure its further economic and social objectives. These will require efficient and effective transportation, affordable housing and investment in essential assets, such as new and improved roads, rail links, airport facilities, homes, and water and sewage facilities, all of which consume aggregates.
 
The Government is committed to improving the country's built environment and transport infrastructure in order to secure its further economic and social objectives. These will require efficient and effective transportation, affordable housing and investment in essential assets, such as new and improved roads, rail links, airport facilities, homes, and water and sewage facilities, all of which consume aggregates.
  Sustainable and continuous supply of aggregates is esential to the construction industry.

Sustainable and continuous supply of aggregates is esential to the construction industry.

Thus large quantities of construction aggregates will continue to be required and, despite the increased use of recycled aggregate, it is likely that the major proportion will continue to be supplied from primary sources, at about the level of 225 million tonnes per annum for UK. Consequently planning for the future supply of aggregates will be the major challenge facing the minerals planning system.

Aggregates consumption is broadly in line with land-won sales and marine-dredged landings of sand and gravel, as imports and exports of crushed rock are broadly in balance. However, whilst Britain is self-sufficient in primary aggregates, and indeed is a small exporter, there are significant regional imbalances in consumption, which require inter-UK and inter-regional movements of aggregates.
Consumption of some minerals in the UK, 2003

. Consumption of all aggregates -
. Consumption of primary aggregates -
. Consumption of coal -
. Consumption of oil -

270 million tonnes
225 million tonnes
61 million tonnes
74 million tonnes

Sales and consumption of primary aggregates, 2001.

Sales and consumption of primary aggregates, 2001.

. . . more