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Meridian Institute

RARE EARTHS: USGS Details Afghanistan Find

Summary posted by Meridian on 9/20/2011

Source: Greenwire

Author(s): Manuel Quinones

The United States Geological Survey said there is at least one million metric tons of rare earth elements in Afghanistan. The new estimate was released by the U.S. Department of Defense’s Task Force for Business and Stability Operations, which is tasked with helping to boost the economy in Afghanistan. Regina Dubey, the task force acting director, said, "The international mining community is beginning to realize Afghanistan's extraordinary mineral potential. The USGS's groundbreaking work provides a foundation for the kind of future investment that could help create a vibrant Afghan economy." Marcia McNutt, the USGS Director, added, "We hope our neutral and unbiased analysis of this location, supply, and flow of these strategic minerals will help the Afghans understand the true extent of their mineral wealth." The report shows the country is rich in light rare earth elements, such as lanthanum and neodymium. Still, Afghanistan is likely to face strong competition should it decide to commercialize its deposits. Molycorp Inc., which holds deposits of comparable rare earths, is ramping up operations at its California mine, and numerous other advanced projects are underway around the world, as countries attempt to make themselves independent from Chinese rare earth elements.

The original article may still be available at http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/

As tagged by Meridian Institute:

Stakeholders: GovernmentPrivate Sector

Implications: Economic CompetitivenessGovernanceSocio-Economic Effects

Regions: AsiaNorth America

Nanomaterial Category: Metal Nanoparticle

Materials and Manufacturing: ManufacturingMaterials

Minerals and Metals: Metals

Nanotechnology and Development News

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