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Carbon might replace copper in many applications 
'Less material' frame (see hidden code on article page). Needs to fit in better
Mining in vast monotonous abyssal plains under the sea with minimum destruction to nature
Another list of elemental abundance showing that by volume oxygen is an amazing 94.2% 
Interesting ephemeralisation essay: http://www.worldtrans.org/essay/ephemeralization.html
(Was part of intro but needs to go somewhere else perhaps):
Fossil hydrocarbons are a limited resource, many would argue, but with regard to energy there are vastly more plentiful and greener sources available; and as a feedstock for plastics and other useful petrochemical derived materials, renewable , and even could replace our reliance on crude oil if necessary. Our current heavy use of fossil fuel is due to convenience and the fact that current economics make the alternatives appear less viable in comparison. However conventional economics distorts the perception of what is possible and simply dictates what is easier when working within the current framework that we have inherited from times past.
Although putting hydrocarbons to use for the production of useful (non-fuel) polymers is not such an issue as burning it...
Panel on carbon
"A note about carbon"
- Nanotube structure
- Harvesting from atmosphere & reducing atmspheric CO2
A notable absentee from the list of the 20 most abundant elements is copper which currently is indespensible, however carbon may well replace it for many electrical conduction applications as in the right form it has the potential to be an even more efficient conductor - see. Depending on the orientation of nanotube lattices, they can be conducting, semi-conducting or insulating
- Nanotube composites
- graphene oxide paper
Sections: electrical and mechanical / structural