Clean Technology for Rare Earth Minerals.
Ore from a mine near Dubbo in Australia, is now being processed in Korea with a new ‘clean’ technology, which is being closely watched by other operators.
China’s dominance in the processing sector may only be temporary, as rival facilities are planned in Malaysia, the US, Canada and Australia.
A mine in Dubbo, New South Wales, is expected to process up to 1 million tonnes of ore per year over a period of more than 75 years.
“It is very clear in today’s world that security of supply chains in all manner of materials is a pressing issue, and security of critical minerals is one supply chain that the Australian Government is clearly identifying as a priority for government backing,” ASM managing director, David Woodall, noted.
Last year, China produced about 120,000 tonnes of rare earths, while the totals of the next two leading producers — Australia and the US — were 20,000 and 15,000, respectively.
There are at least three other rare earth mining projects in western and northern Australia, as well as Australian miners working on projects in the US and in east Africa. Processing plants are also planned in the US and Canada.
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