15 Things the World Is Running Out Of

Mitch
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Ladies and gentlemen, brace yourselves; we’re running out of…well, many things. Think bigger. Think global. We’re on a planet clocking out on some critical stuff, from oil to chocolate (yes, you heard it right, not the chocolate!). Time’s a-ticking, folks!

Oil

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Oil, the lifeblood of our modern world and the secret sauce behind our vroom-vrooms is declining. We consume a whopping 100 million barrels a day worldwide.

BP’s Statistical Review of World Energy estimates that known reserves will last only about 50 years. Time to invest in EVs, perhaps?

Helium

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Helium, the second most abundant element in the universe, seeps out of the crust and hurries off into space when re-liquified. Scientists also use helium to cool superconducting magnets and in the Large Hadron Collider, and it’s indispensable in MRI scanners.

According to the US Federal Helium Reserve, our helium reserves could deflate within 25 to 30 years if current usage rates continue.

Coffee

15 Things the World Is Running Out Of
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According to the Climate Institute, climate change could slice the suitable coffee-growing land in half by 2050. Rising temperatures, increasing rainfall, and the spread of coffee diseases make for a triple latte of trouble.

Wild coffee varieties are already facing extinction, and with 2.25 billion cups of coffee consumed globally every day, we might have to wake up and smell the impending coffee shortage.

Coal

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It’s been the backbone of our electricity since the Industrial Revolution, but it’s a finite resource, folks. According to the World Coal Association, if we continue to pull coal out of the earth at the same rate as we do today, we’ve got less than 150 years of coal remaining.

Conversely, using coal has contributed significantly to climate change, accounting for nearly 1/4 of global greenhouse gas emissions.

Sand

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Now, who’d think we’re running out of sand, right? It’s not just about those dreamy beaches – sand is crucial for concrete, glass, and electronics.

Globally, we consume over 50 billion metric tons of sand annually, with the construction industry being a significant consumer, according to the United Nations Environment Programme. Without sustainable mining practices, we might turn our world into a giant sandbox, minus the sand.

Gold

15 Things the World Is Running Out Of
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Let’s deal out some sobering facts: all the gold ever mined would form a cube of 21 meters on each side, according to the World Gold Council.

That’s about the length of three-and-a-half swimming pools! The US Geological Survey estimates that only 52,000 tons of minable gold are left worldwide.

Sardines

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Care for a can of sardines? According to the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea, the stock of sardines has plummeted by over 70% in the last two decades. Overfishing and changing ocean conditions are to blame.

Chocolate

15 Things the World Is Running Out Of
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The world’s cocoa supply is, unfortunately, dwindling. The reason? Climate change and deforestation are making it harder for cocoa farmers in places like Ivory Coast and Ghana, which produce more than half of the world’s chocolate, to grow this beloved crop. It’s estimated that by 2050, these regions could become unsuitable for cocoa production.

Wine

15 Things the World Is Running Out Of
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A study by Morgan Stanley Research reveals a growing demand-supply imbalance, primarily driven by a decrease in production. The report states that global wine consumption in 2020 hit a whopping 24 billion liters, but hold your grapes; the production was just 23.1 billion liters.

That’s right, we’re drinking more vino than we’re making. This shortfall is mainly due to changing climate patterns affecting wine-producing regions worldwide.

Goat Cheese

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Global demand for goat cheese has significantly outstripped supply, with the U.S. consuming around 300 million pounds annually. Yet, the world’s goat population, responsible for this creamy delicacy, is not keeping up.

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), there are approximately 1 billion goats worldwide – not all goats produce the milk needed for our beloved goat cheese. Only specific breeds like the Alpine, LaMancha, and Saanen are up to the task.

Bacon

15 Things the World Is Running Out Of
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Bacon’s scarcity isn’t a result of a lack of pigs but rather from the insatiable demand. According to the USDA, in 2020, America alone consumed an astounding 18 pounds of bacon per person.

The U.S. bacon reserves (yes, there’s a reserve for bacon) hit a 50-year low in 2017.

Phosphorus

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This might not seem like a big deal until you realize that phosphorus is a crucial ingredient in fertilizers and essential for plant growth.

Studies suggest we could run out of phosphorus within 50 to 100 years because of overuse and wasteful practices. A study by Cordell, Drangert, and White (2009) estimates that 2040 demand could outstrip supply.

Water

15 Things the World Is Running Out Of
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You’d think we have plenty of it, right? After all, our planet is about 70% water. But here’s the kicker: only about 2.5% is freshwater, with a mere 0.3% available for human use.

According to UNESCO, by 2025, an estimated 1.8 billion people will live in areas plagued by water scarcity.

Tequila

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The blue agave plant, the only type used to make genuine tequila, is facing a severe shortage. Farmers struggle to meet the supply, with agave plants taking about ten years to reach maturity and the increasing demand for tequila worldwide.

In fact, according to the Tequila Regulatory Council, the price of agave has skyrocketed from 3.85 pesos per kilo in 2016 to 22 pesos in 2018.

Coral Reefs

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We’d also say adios to a significant marine stronghold apart from losing the ocean’s rainbow. According to the World Wildlife Fund, around one-quarter of coral reefs worldwide are already considered damaged beyond repair, with another two-thirds under serious threat.

If present rates of destruction continue, 60% of the world’s coral reefs will be gone in the next 30 years.

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Author

  • Mitch

    A computer science enthusiast with a keen interest in technology and games, Mitchelle (Mitch) contributes a cutting-edge perspective to the Frenz Hub writing team, integrating her academic knowledge with her personal passions

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