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Over 2 billion tons of rare Earth mineral found in US could make country the new 'world leader'

Lucy Devine

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Over 2 billion tons of rare Earth mineral found in US could make country the new 'world leader'

Featured Image Credit: American Rare Earths / MARCUS YAM / LOS ANGELES TIMES / Getty

The US could soon become a world leader in rare earth minerals after over two billion metric tons were found in Wyoming.

The discovery could mean America taking over China, whose supplies stand at 44 million metric tons.

According to American Rare Earths Inc, the discovery 'exceeded [their] wildest dreams' having only drilled around a quarter of the project.

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The kinds of minerals discovered are widely used in technology, such as smartphones, hybrid cars and aircrafts as well as things like lightbulbs and lamps.

These include oxides of neodymium, praseodymium, samarium, dysprosium and terbium.

Currently, a whopping 95 per cent of earth minerals originate from China, with the States alone importing 74 per cent.

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But following a ban on extraction in December 2023, American Rare Earths have been working to break China's record.

The company first started drilling in March 2023 and estimated 1.2 million metric tons of minerals in Wyoming.

But further drills have revealed way more. In fact, American Rare Earths have actually increased its yield by over two thirds.

The US could soon become a world leader in rare earth minerals. Credit: American Rare Earths
The US could soon become a world leader in rare earth minerals. Credit: American Rare Earths
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"These results are illustrative of the enormous potential of the project when the resource increased by 64 percent during a developmental drilling campaign, which increased measured/indicated resources by 128 percent," said American Rare Earths CEO Don Schwartz.

"Typically, you’ll see the resource decrease as infill drilling takes place – instead, we’re seeing the opposite, with only 25 percent of the project being drilled to this point."

American Rare Earths aren't the only ones in the running.

Ramaco Resources revealed it had found a deposit of rare minerals near Sheridan in Wyoming, that could have a value of $37 billion.

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Ramaco Resources CEO Randall Atkins told Cowboy State Daily: "We only tested it for 100, 200 feet, which is about the maximum you’d ever want to do a conventional coal mine.

The company first started drilling in March 2023. Credit: American Rare Earths
The company first started drilling in March 2023. Credit: American Rare Earths

"Much deeper than that, and the cost would be prohibitive to mine for $15-a-ton coal. But there are seams that go down almost to 1,000 feet. So, we’re drilling down into the deeper levels to see what’s down there."

But American Rare Earths has dismissed the estimate.

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“Our resources is on an order of magnitude larger than the Ramaco Resources number,” said Schwartz.

“If you did the same thing for it, you’d come up with a lot bigger number, but that doesn’t take into account whether you can [mine and process] more economically, or even do it.”

Topics: News, World News, China

Lucy Devine
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