Copper

  • Australia has the world’s second largest economic resources of copper and is the 7th largest producer and third largest exporter of copper ores and concentrates.
  • The average home contains 180 kilograms of copper and an average car contains more than 20 kilograms of copper.
  • Copper is 100 per cent recyclable. Nearly 80 per cent of the copper that has been produced is still in use today.

Copper is a metal with very high thermal and electrical conductivity that can be drawn out into a thin wire. It is commonly used to produce electrical cables and electrical equipment. Copper and its alloys are also widely used in plumbing components, building construction and industrial machinery.

Global copper consumption is usually linked to construction activities and urbanisation of emerging economies. Increasing use of renewable energy technologies and electric vehicles is also driving increased copper consumption globally.

Australia holds major copper resources across the continent and is a major producer and exporter of copper ores and concentrates. The majority of Australia’s copper ores and concentrates are exported to Asia. Australia’s main copper producing areas are the Mount Isa/Cloncurry region in Queensland and Olympic Dam in South Australia.

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