Could the Telegraph please find a reporter who knows something about his subject?

Rare earth metal shortage a \’ticking time-bomb\’
A \”ticking time-bomb\” looms over several core manufacturing industries, experts have warned, due to a growing shortage of \”rare earth\” metals.

Hmm, that\’s strange, given that there are several large rare earth mines due to come online in the next couple of years.

What shortage?

Accounts PricewaterhouseCoopers said business leaders in sectors including automotive, chemicals, and energy fear they will be the hardest hit as commodities such as Beryllium, Cobalt and Flurospar become scarcer. The metals are are used as components in items ranging from military equipment to automotive rechargeable batteries.

Those aren\’t rare earths and Flurospar isn\’t even a metal. Indeed, Flurospar is a proprietary coating technology, the mineral is in fact fluorspar.

Useful in steel making, the important use is as a source of fluorine to make hydrofluoric acid and no, none of those are metals either: fluorine is a halide.

Is it really too much to ask that reporters should have at least a vague grasp of the beats they cover?

3 comments on “Could the Telegraph please find a reporter who knows something about his subject?

  1. My favourite Telegraph SNAFU this morning: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/environment/8939756/Falkland-Islands-marine-protection-zone-could-prompt-Argentina-backlash.html

    “The confrontation strategy targetting foreign boats marks an escalation of tensions in seas that Duke of Cambridge, a Flight Lieutenant with the RAF, is set to patrol during a tour of duty last year. ”

    If they’re no longer employing aussie subs, then it looks like they’ve decided to not employ any subs at all.

  2. I love the photo they’ve used to inform the general public of what cobalt looks like. I just hope they won’t be putting that particular isotope into the “automotive batteries”.

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