Most of us know where our food originates from. But how many of us take for granted the natural resources used to produce appliances, bench tops, pipes, cups and cabinets in your kitchen?
Most of the natural resources listed below are mined right here, in Queensland (only two aren't: chromium and platinum. These are imported from South Africa).
1. Fridge: copper in the internal wiring,steel (iron, carbon) in the casing, frame and compressor, and petrochemicals (made from petroleum) for the plastic shelves.
2. Tap fittings: Stainless steel (steel, chromium) in the tap handle,brass (copper, zinc) in the valves, plastic (petrochemicals) in the washers.
3. Bench Top: Granite, or stainless steel (steel, chromium) laminate and chipboard (made with petrochemicals).
4. Cabinets: Mineral fillers and pigments such as cobalt, titanium and magnesia for the paint. Petrochemicals (made from petroleum) that are in the glue used to bond particleboard and create the laminate, and steel (iron, carbon) or brass (copper, zinc) in the hinges and screws.
5. Blender / food processor: Copper in the wiring, alloy (aluminium) blades, and steel (iron, carbon) for the electric motor.
6. Pots and pans: Stainless steel (steel, chromium) for the handle and body, petroleum for plastics in handles, and iron or copper for the base.
7. Light bulb: tungsten for the lighting filament, silica to create the glass bulb.
8. Microwave oven: Time to fire up the oven and get cooking. But it won't work without: Copper for the internal wiring, nickel and chromium for the heating element, silica for the glass door, and steel (iron, carbon) for the frame. Gas (if a gas oven).
9. Microwave: Copper for the internal wiring, silica in the glass door, steel (iron, carbon) in the oven's casing, petroleum used to make its plastics, and zinc, silicon, lead, platinum, gold and silver in the electronic circuitry.
10. Power: When you flick the switch to turn on your lights, or any other appliance, it's Queensland coal that is probably powering your home. When you switch on your stove, oven or hot water, it is probably powered by Queensland gas.