Mining of rare earths in Australia to be accelerated.
The Australian company Lynas intends to meet the rising demand for rare earths by expanding its mining and processing capacities at the Mount Weld mine in Western Australia. To this end, the company will invest the equivalent of around 341 million euros, as announced today (PDF). Driven primarily by electromobility and renewable energies, global demand for neodymium-iron-boron (NdFeB) magnets will rise to 265,000 metric tons by 2030, more than double the 2020 level, according to Lynas. CEO Amanda Lacaze believes her company is well equipped for the future, and that Mount Weld has the potential to supply raw materials for many years, as recently confirmed by test drilling.
Measures were also announced today to make mining of the critical raw materials more environmentally friendly, with on-site power generation to be converted from diesel to gas and finally to hybrid technology. There are also plans for the gradual renaturation of the tailings piles and improved water management.
Lynas plays an important role in the efforts to diversify the supply chains for rare earths, as it is considered the most important non-Chinese company that controls both the mining and processing of these raw materials.