Tiberium, also known as "Ichor", is a typically green, highly toxic, crystalline substance that plays a major role in the Command and Conquer Tiberium Universe. Tiberium was first brought to Earth in 1995 by a Tiberium-based alien race known as the Scrin, who know the substance as "Ichor" and require it both to survive and support their technology. The Scrin intended to allow Earth to become overrun with Tiberium and then harvest the crystals from the planet. However, the involvement of the Scrin would not become clear until almost 50 years after the introduction of Tiberium to Earth.
Around the same time Tiberium was first near the Tiber River in Italy- the source of the substance's name, a religious organization known as the Brotherhood of Nod, led by a mysterious self-proclaimed messiah known only as Kane, pioneered Tiberium harvesting techniques, which allowed them to extract minerals leeched into the Tiberium crystals from the soil. Kane professed that Tiberium was not an ecological disaster, but the next step in evolution of mankind, and a gift from God.
Their Tiberium refining technology allowed Nod to gain great wealth, and, in 1999, after gaining a significant following, Nod openly started seizing control of third world countries in Africa and Eastern Europe.
- The substance is named as such because it was first discovered near the river Tiber in Italy. Kane, who claims it was in fact the Brotherhood of Nod who first discovered Tiberium, states that he himself named it after Tiberius Julius Caesar Augustus.
- The Scrin name of Tiberium, Ichor, comes from Greek mythology, which is the substance that flows in the gods' veins.