As the US pushes to dilute China’s monopoly and develop a domestic rare earth supply, Colorado-based Energy Fuels (TSX: EFR) is working towards being at the forefront in the race.
Energy Fuels is the owner of the White Mesa Mill in Utah, the only fully-licensed and operating conventional uranium mill in the United States. The facility is normally used to process radioactive ore and produce yellowcake but now some areas are likely to be transformed to allow for the processing of uranium-rare earth ores.
“Our rare earth elements program intends to make the mill available for miners to process their uranium-rare earth ores in the US. Such a facility does not currently exist,” Mark Chalmers, president and CEO of Energy Fuels, told MINING.COM.
According to Chalmers, the mill’s ability to remove and recover uranium and manage the radioactive byproducts from rare earth ore potentially makes it a key link in the US rare earth supply chain.
This is because many rare earth separation facilities are unable to handle uranium or the radioactive byproducts due to either technical or regulatory reasons, which explains why China’s rare earth industry is closely tied to its nuclear industry.
For the rest of this article: https://www.mining.com/only-mill-in-the-us-able-to-process-uranium-rare-earth-ores-open-for-business/