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Rare Element Resources receives approval for rare earth demonstration plant

Published by , Editorial Assistant
Global Mining Review,

Rare Element Resources Ltd. has announced that the US Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy has finalised its National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) review of the company’s planned rare earth processing and separation demonstration plant to be built in Upton, Wyoming.

This completes the federal permitting activity prior to construction. The DOE NEPA review was consistent with the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s NEPA review, with both resulting in a finding of no significant impact. The company is awaiting next stage budget approval from the DOE, which is providing approximately 50% of the project costs, to commence construction. The Demonstration Plant will advance the company’s proprietary recovery and separation technology, and the operational and economic data generated will be essential to the design of a commercial-scale plant.

“The DOE’s completion of its NEPA review was the final federal licensing approval required, and we thank the DOE for its completion of this important task,” said Brent Berg, President and CEO of RER. “We are now advancing offsite fabrication and equipment assembly, while the DOE concludes the construction and operations budget approval, which is expected by the end of November 2023. This DOE approval will clear the way for the commencement of site renovations and equipment installation. We have completed the relocation of our Bear Lodge sample material to a nearby location, as well as the selection of our construction contractor.” Mr. Berg added, “Following our planned construction period, we could see plant operations begin as early as summer 2024 – moving us one step closer to our goal of creating a secure, domestic source of separated and refined rare earths.”

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