Dynamic neodymium stocks and flows analysis in China

Tianli Yao, Yong Geng*, Joseph Sarkis, Shijiang Xiao, Ziyan Gao

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

37 Citations (Scopus)


Neodymium is widely used for magnetic materials in electronic devices, electric vehicles and home appliances. China is facing challenges of increased neodymium demand and a lack of neodymium recycling systems. However, few studies focus on neodymium resource utilization in China—a major consumer of this resource. This study traces and forecasts neodymium flows and stocks in China using dynamic material flow analysis from a life cycle perspective. The results show that China's demand for neodymium at the use stage had increased over 20 times during 2000-2017. By contrast, official neodymium production has only doubled, indicating the existence of illegal mining to meet the increasing neodymium demand. Also, the total net neodymium exports have continuously decreased due to reduced export of primary products and intermediate products. In addition, smuggling of primary products remains an issue and needs to be eliminated. Wind turbines and electric vehicles will become major neodymium consumption sectors greatly increasing future demand requirements. To avoid insufficient recycling and illegal neodymium mining, more appropriate neodymium management policies should be released to balance neodymium supply and demand.
Original languageEnglish
Article number105752
Peer-reviewed scientific journalResources, Conservation and Recycling
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 05.07.2021
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article - refereed


  • 512 Business and Management
  • Neodymium
  • Dynamic MFA
  • Stock and flow
  • Demand forecast
  • Supply risk
  • Urban governance

Areas of Strength and Areas of High Potential (AoS and AoHP)

  • AoHP: Humanitarian and societal logistics


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