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Rare Earth Elements Found In Jamaican Mud 100

Posted by Soulskill
from the worth-more-than-the-common-and-uncommon-earth-elements dept.
stevegee58 writes "Jamaica was once home to a thriving bauxite (aluminum ore) industry. While Jamaican bauxite mining may have fallen on hard times, it seems that the bauxite tailings in the form of red mud are rich in rare earth elements. Japanese researchers have discovered rare earth elements in high concentrations in this red mud and have already invested $3M in a pilot project to extract them. Perhaps Chinese dominance of rare earth deposits is on the wane as global manufacturers continue to search for and find other deposits of these valuable minerals."
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Rare Earth Elements Found In Jamaican Mud

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  • by wvmarle (1070040) on Tuesday January 15, 2013 @11:32PM (#42599711)

    Must be quite low concentrations still, as otherwise they would have certainly known about it before. After all they've been mining bauxite there already, so certainly done a lot more research on that specific mud than on most of the rest of the mud on Earth.

  • by Fnkmaster (89084) on Wednesday January 16, 2013 @12:06AM (#42599893)

    Funny, I thought what was rare was finding them in high concentrations in places where labor is cheap and environmental laws lax.

  • by black6host (469985) on Wednesday January 16, 2013 @12:56AM (#42600093)

    You mean, let's see how long until we declare that the Jamaican people need to be "liberated".

    Or . . . how long until we need to send a massive force there after a "natural disaster" to help out.

    In the old days one might interpret "massive force" as military. I think we could go straight to a massive corporate presence as it is they who control things anyway. If that doesn't work then we have trade sanctions, etc and finally the military. If this scenario is not for today, my guess is it will be soon.

  • Next step... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by FrankSchwab (675585) on Wednesday January 16, 2013 @01:22AM (#42600211) Journal

    So, China created an artificial monopoly by selling below cost and driving all other producers out of business...

    Then raised prices and restricted supply to drive costs up....

    And the free market responded with new suppliers entering the market...

    So China will let them spend billions of dollars developing their new sources, and we'll all go back to step 1 before they make a dimes worth of profit.

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