Tag Archives: Rare earth mineral

Japan Finds Rare Earth Elements in Seabed


Japan Finds Rare Earth Elements in Seabed

Japanese researchers have discovered an estimated 100 billion tons of rare earth minerals in the Pacific Ocean floor. These minerals are a vital component of many hi-tech devices, including hybrid cars, flat-screen TVs, iPods, superconductors, lasers, missiles, night-vision goggles, and wind turbines. Currently, China produces 97 percent of the world’s rare earth metals. In recent years, it has cut export quotas, citing environmental concerns and domestic demand. This has led to accusations of strategic hoarding and price gouging. If recovering the minerals from the seabed proves commercially viable, the deposits could expand the world’s reserves 1,000-fold. More… Discuss