The United States is the largest producer and consumer of diatomite in the world. In 2001, the United States produced about a third of the estimated global production of 1.95 million metric tons (Mt) of diatomite (Dolley, 2003). In any given year, the United States accounts for at least 50 percent of all the diatomite exported in the world (Roskill, 1994). Seven diatomite companies operating in the United States produce diatomite in various grades for a range of applications, including filtration, absorbents, fillers, insulation, and cement manufacture. Economic deposits of diatomite within the United States depend on variations in the physical and chemical properties between and within deposits, potential end uses, and proximity to suitable markets. On the basis of historical production figures, estimated U.S. diatomite-production capacity is currently about 800,000 metric tons per year (t/yr).