Multiple rare earth discoveries the key for a greener future

With the discovery of 1 million tonnes of rare earth oxides in Sweden’s north, the largest deposit of its kind found in Europe, Swedish firm LKAB has made a significant breakthrough in the rare earths space. 

With the discovery of 1 million tonnes of rare earth oxides in Sweden’s north, the largest deposit of its kind found in Europe, Swedish firm LKAB has made a significant breakthrough in the rare earths space. 

Stating that the discovery could “become a significant building block for producing the critical raw materials that are absolutely crucial to enable the green transition,” CEO, Jan Mostrom’s company is at the forefront of clean energy.

For the uninitiated, rare earths are a group of 15 (or sometimes 17) metallic elements that have become essential components of many high-tech products, ranging from smartphones to electric cars. 

The demand for rare earths has been growing rapidly in recent years, driven by the rise of electric vehicles, wind turbines, and other clean energy technologies. These technologies rely on rare earths for their efficient operation, particularly for permanent magnets, which accounted for 43% of rare earth uses in 2021. 

You can even find rare earths in your flatscreen TVs and LED lights. 

The increasing demand for these technologies is driving the demand for rare earths higher, making them an investment opportunity to be considered.

China has been the world’s largest producer and exporter of rare earths, accounting for 60% of global production in 2021. This dominance has given China significant leverage in the rare earths market, with the country using its control over supply to exert political and economic pressure on other countries. 

Geopolitical issues aside, China and Sweden aren’t the only countries furthering the research for these critical materials.

As the 4th top rare earths producer in the world, Australia is a big player in the space. One of the emerging companies to come out of Australia is Horizon Minerals, based in the West Australian goldfields.

Normally a mid-tier gold producer, the company has recently made a rare earths discovery. As part of a regional air-core drilling program, multiple rare earth anomalies came up in the results. These included ‘magnet rare earths’ made up of what’s called the Rare Earth Elements (REE) suite, as well as Scandium, which has historically been classified as a rare earth element. 

While further metallurgical testing is still required, this is a step forward for Horizon, signalling an opportunity to add rare earths to the company’s portfolio of interests.

Horizon Managing Director, Jon Price was encouraged by the results, stating, “as rare earth prices steadily improve, we have noted there has been a substantial increase amongst explorers discovering clay hosted rare earths in Western Australia over the last 12 months” 

Not only are rare earths an investment opportunity, they appear to be the key to a greener future.

If you are interested in future investment opportunities in the rare earths industry, please register your interest and we will keep you updated. 

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