The extraction of minerals from natural resources and their subsequent use in the manufacturing of products creates enormous amounts of waste that will likely never be put to any use. Furthermore, by design, many man-made products are lost to the environment and therefore cannot be recycled either – an example here would be brake pads on vehicles that wear with use, and the metals are therefore lost forever to the environment. Recycling is more common today than ever before, but some products are just not able to be re-used, and the contained metals are liberated for re-use. Technologies will continually be developed, but the world has a problem – the so-called mineral-metal-material blind spot. We argue here that mineral extraction from primary sources will be required for many years to come in order to achieve global carbon neutrality targets.