Magnesium is mostly acquired by the electrolysis of magnesium chloride, which may be found in practically infinite quantities in the seas. It is derived from salt lake brines in the United States. Trace quantities of magnesium can also be derived from the magnesium-containing minerals dolomite, magnesite, kieserite, and brucite. The main source of magnesium today is seawater, which accounts for about 95% of total production.
Miners first sought out magnesium deposits near water sources because of its abundance in ocean waters. They now go where there is demand for magnesium, which is mainly in food and beverage products, chemical compounds, and fiberglass insulation. Some large-scale mining takes place in various parts of the world, especially China, Australia, and Canada.
Mining technology has improved greatly since early times. Modern mines use underground operations such as tunneling or blasting to reach ore bodies. Above ground mining includes open pit mining and quarry mining. Open pit mining creates a hole in the ground and removes all or most of the rock layer to get at the mineral below. Quarry mining is similar to open pit mining but the hole is not as deep and some of the removed rock is dumped to one side of the excavation site to create a quarry.
In conclusion, magnesium is mostly obtained from seawater through a process called electroyltion. Miners dig down into the seafloor to locate good magnesium deposit sites.
The majority of magnesium generated globally is in the form of magnesium carbonate, which is derived from natural minerals such as dolomite and magnesite. It is also found in saltwater, which includes 0.13 percent of the element in the form of magnesium chloride, as well as brines from salt lakes and subterranean natural salt deposits. Magnesium can also be obtained from various industrial by-products including black smoker tubes, battery casings, and thermally treated garbage.
Magnesium mining has many adverse effects on the environment due to the use of toxic chemicals for its extraction. The process also generates large amounts of solid waste that must be disposed of after mining is finished. Mining can damage the soil and water sources where the minerals are located, causing them to become less productive.
The majority of magnesium consumed worldwide is used in industry for all kinds of applications related to energy savings and efficiency. New technologies have been developed to reduce the amount of magnesium used for manufacturing processes.
About one-third of the world's supply of magnesium is extracted from nature and another third is produced through chemical reactions. The remaining third is made up of the metals inside other elements: aluminum, copper, iron, zinc, and vanadium. Humans extract these metals by crushing rocks with acid or heat, a process called "leaching."
As far as concerns about human consumption of magnesium, the evidence suggests that it is not a problem.
Although magnesium may be derived from the minerals dolomite and carnalite, saltwater and salty lakes are the principal sources of magnesium outside of China. More than a million tons of magnesium compounds are found in each cubic kilometer of saltwater. In 2015, saltwater and brines accounted for 63% of magnesium output in the United States. The other 37% came from mining.
Magnesium is the second most common element on earth after oxygen. It is found in many substances in our environment, including some foods that we eat. However, none of these sources provides enough magnesium to meet the body's needs over time. Magnesium is essential for more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body, including maintaining strong bones and teeth, controlling blood pressure, and transmitting signals from the nervous system to the muscles.
The body naturally removes excess magnesium through the urine. Any change in urinary flow can indicate a problem with magnesium metabolism, such as hypermagnesemia (high levels of magnesium in the blood). Hypermagnesemia can lead to muscle spasms, confusion, and cardiac arrest. Other symptoms include abdominal pain, diarrhea, inability to concentrate, feeling tired or weak, and skin lesions. Severe malnutrition can also cause high levels of magnesium in the blood.
People who ingest large amounts of magnesium often do not feel any different, but this does not mean that their bodies are properly storing it.