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A Survey of World Resources



    IN a report on “The Problem of Raw Materials”prepared by Prof. I. Hogbom, of Stockholm, and issued by the League of Nations in 1937, there is a striking graph showing the world production of the principal minerals and metals during the period 1860-1937. Sir Harold Hartley uses this graph as the text of an article, published in The Times of November 27, on the need for a survey of world resources. The graph is plotted on a logarithmic scale and demonstrates that production of aluminium, tin, copper, phosphates, petroleum, pig iron, coal and lignite had a steady rate of growth until 1914. Then the general rate decreases sharply, to be followed by violent oscillations during the past twenty-five years. The end of the period of steady increase marked the end of territorial expansion and exploitation, accompanied by failure to realize that world conditions had changed, and that a planned economy was required. Such a plan is implicit in the orderly economic collaboration of the United Nations envisaged in the Atlantic Charter. The goal is “greater stability of world conditions and increased well-being based on the better use of world resources, full employment and the development of backward areas” The foundation of any scheme directed towards this end is a world survey of production and consumption.

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