Nedal T Nassar

I am the chief of the Materials Flow Analysis Section at the National Minerals Information Center, U.S. Geological Survey.



Employing a systems perspective, my team and I examine the global stocks and flows of non-fuel mineral commodities at each stage of their life cycle in order to gain a more complete understanding of their status above ground. We analyze trends and examine concerns regarding foreign mineral dependency. We develop supply and demand scenarios to better anticipate potential shortfalls. We collaborate with other USGS Mission Areas to provide a more complete understanding of the mineral supply situation. We also collaborate with and provide data analysis for other federal agencies to help them achieve their missions. In short, our work provides decision makers with the information necessary to ensure that the U.S. has an adequate supply of mineral resources.



Ph.D. Industrial Ecology, Yale University

M.Phil. Industrial Ecology, Yale University

M.ESc. Industrial Ecology, Yale University

M.B.A. Business Administration, Cornell University

B.ChE. Chemical Engineering, University of Minnesota




Google scholar profile

28. Gulley, A.L, Nassar, N.T., Xun, S., 2018, China, the United States, and competition for resources that enable emerging technologies: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, doi:10.1073/pnas.1717152115


27. Fortier, S.M., Nassar, N.T., Lederer, G.W., Brainard, Jamie, Gambogi, Joseph, and McCullough, E.A., 2018, Draft critical mineral list—Summary of methodology and background information—U.S. Geological Survey technical input document in response to Secretarial Order No. 3359: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2018–1021, 15 p.


26. Brainard, Jamie, Nassar, N.T., Gambogi, Joseph, Baker, M.S., and Jarvis, M.T., 2018, Globally sourced mineral commodities used in U.S. Navy SEAL gear—An illustration of U.S. net import reliance: U.S. Geological Survey General Information Product 183, 2 p.


25. McCullough, E., and Nassar, N.T., 2017, Assessment of critical minerals: updated application of an early-warning screening methodology: Mineral Economics. vol. 30, p. 257-272.


24. Nassar, N.T., 2017, Shifts and trends in the global anthropogenic stocks and flows of tantalum: Resources, Conservation and Recycling, v. 125, p. 233–250.


23. Singerling, S.A., and Nassar, N.T., 2017, Minor metals and renewable energy—Diversifying America’s energy sources: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2017–3061, 2 p.


22. Jenni, K.E., Goldhaber, M.B., Betancourt, J.L., Baron, J.S., Bristol, R.S., Cantrill, Mary, Exter, P.E., Focazio, M.J., Haines, J.W., Hay, L.E., Hsu, Leslie, Labson, V.F., Lafferty, K.D., Ludwig, K.A., Milly, P.C., Morelli, T.L., Morman, S.A., Nassar, N.T., Newman, T.R., Ostroff, A.C., Read, J.S., Reed, S.C., Shapiro, C.D., Smith, R.A., Sanford, W.E., Sohl, T.L., Stets, E.G., Terando, A.J., Tillitt, D.E., Tischler, M.A., Toccalino, P.L., Wald, D.J., Waldrop, M.P., Wein, Anne, Weltzin, J.F., and Zimmerman, C.E., 2017, Grand challenges for integrated USGS science—A workshop report: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2017–1076, 94 p.


21. Dewulf, J., Blengini, G.A., Pennington, D., Nuss, P., and Nassar, N.T., 2016, Criticality on the international scene: Quo vadis? Resources Policy, v. 50, p. 169–176.


20. Nassar, N.T., Wilburn, D.R., and Goonan, T.G., 2016, Byproduct metal requirements for U.S. wind and solar photovoltaic electricity generation up to the year 2040 under various Clean Power Plan scenarios: Applied Energy, v. 183, p. 1209–1226.


19. Ciacci, L., Harper, E.M., Nassar, N.T., Reck, B.K., and Graedel, T.E., 2016, Metal Dissipation and Inefficient Recycling Intensify Climate Forcing: Environmental Science & Technology, v. 50, no. 20, p. 11394–11402.


18. Meinert, L., Robinson, G., and Nassar, N.T., 2016, Mineral Resources–Reserves, peak production and the future: Resources, v. 5, no. 1, p. 14.


17.  Nassar, N.T., Xun, S., Schoeberlein, D., Fortier, S., Fields, F., Bauer, D., Meinert, L., and Carim, A., 2016, Assessment of critical minerals: Screening methodology and initial application: U.S. National Science and Technology Council, Washington, D.C.

16.  Nassar, N.T., 2015, Global stocks and flows, losses, and recoveries of platinum-group elements, PhD dissertation, Yale University, New Haven.

15.  Nassar, N.T., Graedel, T.E., and Harper, E.M., 2015, By-product metals are technologically essential but have problematic supply: Science Advances, v. 1, no. 3, p. e1400180.


14. Graedel, T.E., Harper, E.M., Nassar, N.T., Nuss, P., and Reck, B.K., 2015, Criticality of metals and metalloids: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, v. 112, no. 14, p. 4257–4262.


13. Ciacci, L., Reck, B.K., Nassar, N.T., and Graedel, T.E., 2015, Lost by design: Environmental Science and Technology, v. 49, p. 9443–9451.


12. Nassar, N.T., 2015, Limitations to elemental substitution as exemplified by the platinum-group metals: Green Chemistry, v. 17, p. 2226–2235.


11. Nassar, N.T., Du, X., and Graedel, T.E., 2015, Criticality of the rare earth elements: Journal of Industrial Ecology, v. 19, no. 6, p. 1044–1054


10. Nuss, P., Harper, E.M., Nassar, N.T., Reck, B.K., and Graedel, T.E., 2014, Criticality of iron and its principal alloying elements: Environmental Science & Technology, v. 48, no. 7, p. 4171–4177. 


9. Hunt, A.J., Anderson, C.W.N., Bruce, N., García, A.M., Graedel, T.E., Hodson, M., Meech, J. a., Nassar, N.T., Parker, H.L., Rylott, E.L., Sotiriou, K., Zhang, Q., and Clark, J.H., 2014, Phytoextraction as a tool for green chemistry: Green Processing and Synthesis, v. 3, no. 1, p. 3–22.


8. Oliver, C.D., Nassar, N.T., Lippke, B.R., and McCarter, J.B., 2014, Carbon, fossil fuel, and biodiversity mitigation with wood and forests: Journal of Sustainable Forestry, v. 33, no. 3, p. 248–275.


7. Graedel, T.E., Harper, E.M., Nassar, N.T., and Reck, B.K., 2015, On the materials basis of modern society: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, v. 112, p. 6295–6300.


6. Graedel, T.E., and Nassar, N.T., 2013, The criticality of metals–A perspective for geologists, in Jenkin, G.R.T., Lusty, P.A.J., McDonald, I., Smith, M.P., Boyce, A.J., and Wilkinson, J.J. eds., Ore Deposits in an Evolving Earth (Special Publication 393): Geological Society, London, UK, p. 291–302.

5. Nassar, N.T., 2013, Anthropospheric losses of platinum group elements, in Hunt, A.J. ed., Element Recovery and Sustainability: Royal Society of Chemistry, Cambridge, UK, p. 185–206.


4. Desia, A., Nassar, N.T., and Chertow, M., 2012, American seams–An exploration of hybrid fast fashion and domestic manufacturing models in relocalised apparel production: Journal of Corporate Citizenship, no. 45, p. 53–78.

3.     Nassar, N.T., Barr, R., Browning, M., Diao, Z., Friedlander, E., Harper, E.M., Henly, C., Kavlak, G., Kwatra, S., Jun, C., Warren, S., Yang, M.Y., and Graedel, T.E., 2012, Criticality of the geological copper family: Environmental Science and Technology, v. 46, no. 2, p. 1071–1078.


2.     Graedel, T.E., Barr, R., Chandler, C., Chase, T., Choi, J., Christoffersen, L., Friedlander, E., Henly, C., Jun, C., Nassar, N.T., Schechner, D., Warren, S., Yang, M.Y., and Zhu, C., 2012, Methodology of metal criticality determination: Environmental Science and Technology, v. 46, no. 2, p. 1063–1070.


1.  Graedel, T., Barr, R., Cordier, D., Enriquez, M., Hagelüken, C., Hammond, N., Kesler, S., Mudd, G., Nassar, N., Peacey, J., Reck, B., Robb, L., Skinner, B., Turnbull, I., and others, 2011, Estimating long-run geological stocks of metals: UNEP Internationl Panel on Sustainable Resource Management, Paris.


Selected conference presentations & posters

“Early-warning screening for critical minerals: 2016-present” International Round Table on Materials Criticality, Resources For Future Generations 2018, Vancouver, B.C., Canada: June 16-21, 2018.

“Impact of global trends on metal supply and demand” Technology Disruption in the Mining Sector, World Bank Group – Energy & Extractives, Washington, D.C.: June 11, 2018.

“Anticipating demand for critical minerals” Committee on Earth Resources – Critical Minerals and Materials: Opportunities, challenges, and needs for U.S. manufacturing, economy, and security, The National Academy of Sciences, Washington, D.C.: May 9, 2018 (invited).

“Quantifying and characterization in-use stocks of non-fuel mineral commodities” United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) Resource Management WeekSymposium on the Availability of raw materials keynote presentation, Geneva, Switzerland: April 25,2018 (invited).

 “Assessing and tracking critical mineral commodities” American Geosciences Institute―Policy & Critical Issues Webinar online, January 26, 2018 (invited).

“Challenges in closing the loop: perspectives on the circularity of non-fuel mineral commodities” 2017 Yale Environmental Sustainability Summit, Yale University, New Haven, CT: November 3-4, 2017 (invited).

“Shifts and trends in the anthropogenic stocks and flows of tantalum” 58th General Assembly of the Tantalum-Niobium International Study Center, Vancouver, Canada: October 15-18, 2017 (invited).

 “Assessing the supply risk of critical minerals.” Geoscience Congressional Briefing hosted by the American Geophysical Union, Washington, D.C.: October 5, 2017 (invited).

“Metal supply and demand for U.S. solar PV and wind power up to 2040” Roundtable on Science and Technology for SustainabilityThe National Academy of Sciences, Washington, D.C.: June 12, 2017 (invited).

“Byproduct metal requirements for U.S. wind and solar photovoltaic electricity generation up to the year 2040 under various Clean Power Plan scenarios” Poster at 6th Trilateral EU-US-Japan Conference on Critical Materials, Brussels, Belgium: November 28, 2016

“Anthropogenic cycles of metals: case studies of the platinum-group elements” Society of Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration, Washington D.C.: February 9, 2016 (invited).

“From critical metals to elemental sustainability: case studies on the global cycles of the platinum-group elements” Guest lecture at National Defense University— Eisenhower School, Washington, D.C. Feb. 3, 2016 (invited).

“Interagency assessment of critical commodities” 5th Trilateral EU-US-Japan Conference on Critical Materials, Tokyo, Japan: October 26, 2016.

“Critical elements in electronic applications” 18th Annual Green Chemistry & Engineering Conference, American Chemical Society, North Bethesda, MD: June 17-19, 2014 (invited).

“Global stocks and flows, losses and recoveries of platinum-group elements” Gordon Research Conference on Industrial Ecology: Transforming the Industrial Metabolism. Lucca (Barga), Italy: June 1-6, 2014 (invited).

 “Defining sustainable materials” Roundtable on Science and Technology for Sustainability, The National Academy of Sciences, Washington, D.C.: July 27, 2012 (invited).

“Catalysts, ornaments, and hard alloys: the criticality of the platinum-group metals” Poster at Gordon Research Conference on Industrial Ecology: The Role of Industrial Ecology in Addressing Sustainability Imperatives, Les Diablerets, Switzerland: June 17–22, 2012.

 “Preserving the periodic table for posterity” Association of Yale Alumni Assembly LXXI, New Haven, CT: November 17, 2010 (invited).

 “Characterizing and forecasting urban household municipal solid waste in China: A case study of Tianjin.” The World Bank Group, Washington, D.C.: May, 2010.