The Nonrenewable Nature of Helium and the Uncertain Fate of Global Supply

Helium, unlike other elements, is entirely nonrenewable on our planet. 

Generated deep underground through the natural decay of elements like uranium and thorium, the process of helium formation takes countless millennia. 

Eventually, helium seeps through the Earth's crust and becomes trapped in natural gas pockets, from which it can be extracted.

The Nonrenewable Nature of Helium and the Uncertain Fate of Global Supply.

While helium is lightweight, it does not readily combine with other elements. Consequently, once it reaches the Earth's surface, it easily escapes the planet's gravitational pull. Unlike other resources that may turn into pollution or prove difficult to recycle, helium physically disappears from Earth and escapes into outer space, making it the only element from the periodic table to do so.

In fact, Helium is the second most abundant resource in the universe after hydrogen despite being so rare here on planet Earth. 

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During World War I, the discovery of large helium deposits in the United States led to its rapid nationalization and deployment in Europe for military purposes. However, due to the war's end, the planned helium-filled attack blimps were never utilized, although thousands of cylinders were ready for shipment. This incident influenced the subsequent control of the world's helium supply by the United States, leading to the use of hydrogen-filled alternatives like the Hindenburg, which tragically exploded in 1937.

Moreover, helium played a vital role in early space exploration, particularly in the missions to the moon. Due to the need to maintain fuel flow in rockets, helium was used to create the necessary pressure and prevent the formation of a vacuum. The giant Saturn V rockets and the Apollo program relied on helium, sourced from the Strategic Helium Reserve in Texas, to propel astronauts into space and enable their lunar landings.

In fact, Helium is still used to this day by SpaceX, Blue Origin, Virgin Galactic, and NASA for the same purpose. 

Elon Musk needs it to launch his rockets to Mars. 

Helium in its gaseous form also finds use in the fabrication of conventional electronics and microchips. Thus its demand is virtually guaranteed to continue increasing. 

Helium is in high demand for its unique properties at extremely low temperatures. Its ability to liquefy at 4.2 degrees Kelvin (-452.1°F) makes it indispensable for various applications. Liquid helium is crucial in superconducting materials used in fields such as astrophysics, medical imaging through MRI technology, and the development of advanced quantum computers. 

Despite its significance, the global helium supply remains concentrated in a few countries, including the United States, Algeria, and Qatar. Any disruptions in production from these regions can cause helium prices to surge. The volatility in helium prices has led researchers to reevaluate their usage due to financial constraints, potentially impeding progress in important scientific areas.

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And the fate of the Federal Helium Reserve, a significant global supplier of helium, has been uncertain for over a year.

This massive underground structure consists of nearly 500 miles of pipeline, stretching from Amarillo, Texas, to the panhandle of Oklahoma to Kansas, and it provides approximately 40% of the world's helium.

Despite being scheduled for sale by 2021, the reserve has remained inactive. Scientists have advocated for retaining the reserve instead of selling it to a private entity, particularly a major industrial gas or pipeline company, possibly foreign-owned.

They argue that the decision made by Congress in 1996 to initiate a 25-year plan to dispose of the reserve, in an effort to reduce the government's size, was short-sighted and potentially detrimental to various industries, ranging from medical technology to rocket science.

And I agree. It’s vital that the U.S. retains all of its helium reserves as this resource is set to explode in value as its demand increases.

Nick Hodge has identified a $.40 stock that’s set to surge 8x or higher in the coming months as helium demand ramps up. 

You won’t want to miss it.

Chris Curl

Chris Curl
Editor, Daily Profit Cycle