EDIT: probably shouldn't link directly to sci-hub copy.
The short version: crushed stone is a fine substitute for natural sand in concrete. It actually improves strength modestly compared to concrete made with natural sand. ("Concrete with stone crusher dust was reported to show 17%, 7%, 20% higher compressive, tensile, flexural strengths respectively than those of conventional concrete.")
Of course it takes energy to quarry and crush bulk rock. But the energy input is manageable. The Bond Work Index for granite is 10-15 kWh/ton; for quartz/quartzite it's also up to 15 kWh/ton. That means energy cost up to $1.50/ton at 10 cents/kWh for an electrically driven crusher.
For comparison, current concrete sand seems to run about $45/ton:
That doesn't help in countries like India which are growing rapidly, but it can make a big difference in most parts of the US.
E.g. use concentrated sunlight to fuse sand grains together , then crush to the desired grain size.
It’s got to be a better solution than shipping sand halfway around the world.
He is not dismissing anything, just pointing out a simplified rule of economics.
Edit: Apparently, desert sand is too smooth/fine for most construction use.
Latest is that the expansion rate of the universe is slowing. So, one might predict a big crunch and the end of everything. So what?
Looks like someone wants to get eyeballs for ad revenue. No thanks, not with that story.
Stories of the form the sky is falling no longer get my eyeballs. People who write such stories need to find other, more useful work to do.
It's really more of an interesting look at a resource that few in our part of the tech world even think about, and some of the challenges they face, if you can look past the headline.
The good news about such nonsense grabbing people by the heart, the gut, below the belt, always below the shoulders, never between the ears, is that it really is the most scary story they can find. So, all other stories they can find are less scary than their story which is not scary at all which means that all is well. Good.
Maybe if there is some serious problem, then they will write about that, too.