When we think of the mining industry in the past it’s often with a closer focus on materials like coal. Taking a look at geological survey reports from 2016 and a more modern use of mined materials, we see that there are some changes to the most mined materials in the world. Here are some of the most mined materials you can find worldwide:


Coal still ranks amongst the most mined material in the entire world even though coal production has fallen to 7.4 billion tons in the year 2016 compared to previous numbers that were significantly higher. Australia and Russia have declined in their use of coal for industry but there are more nations still continuing to use coal and coal production for worldwide industry as well.


The iron industry is increasing with over 3.3 billion tons extracted from the earth in 2016. The production of crude iron sits at 1.26 billion tones worldwide with a greater demand for iron in a wide range of manufacturing.


Bauxite is a key component to the production of aluminum but it’s production has fluctuated over the past few years. It still remains at a peak with greater increases of bauxite used throughout China, Australia and Brazil.

Phosphate Rock

Over 276,000,000 tons of phosphate rock was mined in 2016. Phosphate rock is produced in the highest numbers throughout China with 144,000,000 tons mined in the year 2016.


Gypsum remains extremely important in the production of installation and a wide range of other components. 267.1 million tons of gypsum ore mined throughout China in 2016.

The analysis of these materials gives us an idea of where the mining industry is going. As we see trends continuing to change, we get an idea of how the mining industry will evolve and how equipment will evolve long into the future.

This post was written by Justin Tidd, Director at Becker/SMC. For nearly a half a century, Becker Mining has been at the forefront of safety, producing the best ground monitor in the industry. Becker/SMC is the industry’s leader in increasingly more sophisticated electrical control systems. Most of the major innovations, design features and specialized electrical components have been developed by Becker/SMC.