Skip to comments.Rush for rare earth may create Nebraska boomtown
Posted on 08/02/2011 5:57:55 PM PDT by jazusamo
Elk Creek, Neb. (population 112), may not be so tiny much longer. Reports suggest that the southeastern Nebraska hamlet may be sitting on the worlds largest untapped deposit of rare earth minerals, which have proved to be indispensable to a slew of high-tech and military applications such as laser pointers, stadium lighting, electric car batteries and sophisticated missile-guidance systems.
Canada-based Quantum Rare Earths Developments Corp. last week received preliminary results from test drilling in the area, showing significant proportions of rare earth minerals and niobium.
The only people more excited than Quantum? The residents of Elk Creek, where nearly one in seven people live under the poverty line, but whose economy has been booming ever since the company showed up late last year to start laying the groundwork for a possible mining bonanza.
Its been a very, very positive experience for our community, said state Sen. Lavon Heidemann, an Elk Creek farmer. When Quantum came in here, they put money in the local community. And any time you have money flowing in a small town, thats a positive.
The potential mining operation, the first in the U.S. in a decade, could have an international impact as well. U.S. officials and lawmakers in Congress have been eager to break the near monopoly on global production of the 17 rare-earth elements in China, which has shown its willingness to use its power in the market for political ends.
Quantum acquired a circular piece of land - a bit more than 4 miles in diameter - near Elk Creek late last year. The land, which the U.S. Geological Survey projects may have one of the worlds largest deposits of niobium and rare earths, has since been poked, prodded and drilled to determine whether it held any niobium, which has never been mined...
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtontimes.com ...
Good for them!
Unfortunately the EPA will probably catch wind of it and shut them down.
The environazis hate mining.
Damn! This could “create” some jobs!
Someone from the EPA or another .gov agency needs to shut down and stop talk of this at once! Perhaps 0bama will arrange for the Chinese to lease the land.
I think we passed through there early in July. Interesting. Have to forward to my BIL that’s from Nebraska.
Look for Obama to turn the entire region into a national park.
Same playbook as Clinton blocking the nation’s clean coal supply under a similar blockade and of course ANWAR.
Future World Heritage site...
exactly, or the they will find an endangered red legged frog
Exactly what I was thinking. As soon as the anti-prosperity socialists at the EPA find out they will suddenly discover that the spotted leaf sh#t weed grows only on the proposed mining site.
LOL, rare earth elements are not rare they are just called that, one of them is a little but there is still supply meeting demand.
Racism! China needs those!
Most of Nebraska is “depressed.” Especially the State capital, Lincoln.
Good! I just bought a slew of NdBFe and samarium magnets and they were twice what I paid three years ago.
Environmental groups have remained silent on the Quantum project in Nebraska, but rare earths are used in many aspects of green technology, including hybrid-engine cars and wind turbines.
The Sierra Club of Nebraska has declined to comment on the mine until production begins.
bet all they want to do is celebrate....
We’ll have to put something up for collateral when the Chinese demand that the debt be paid back. And if the EPA won’t allow us to develop it, it will be ripe for the picking... for the Chinese. Like most of the undeveloped natural resources in this country.
If there was more of it, it would be cheaper, and we sure could use it. Every electric car would use a lot of neodymium in the motors. Any good generator could use it also.
Until production begins.
Get the evil company to invest lots of money and then get an injunction.
I doubt they are buying into the “green” technology argument. They hate success unless they profit from it!
It’s possible that this prospect will be mined but REEs have been the flavor of the year at the mining expos. As long as Elk River doesn’t increase world supply by a large factor, then the project could be viable, however, some of these projects are large enough to substantially influence the market price of the REE in question so Quantum will want to find a long term contract. If Quantum lines up a long term supply contract, perhaps with the Japanese, then this project would be a go. The grades on the drill hole intervals look good and it would be an underground mine which would make the environazis a tiny bit happier.
By the way, the only reason the environazis have not been out in force protesting this is because they haven’t applied for a mining permit yet, just permits for the drilling and drill pads. They will kick up a storm as they always do. There will be a big stir over the processing of the ore.