Multi-million dollar rare earth metal project to begin soon

Phillip Paulwell – File

Phillip Paulwell – File

The multi-million dollar rare earth elements extraction pilot project is expected to begin soon.

Energy Minister Phillip Paulwell told the Government’s news service, JIS, that construction work on the plant is over 95 per cent complete.

The plant is being built at a cost of $300 million and the project is expected to last for six months.

Paulwell says the equipment to be used has been imported and red mud is being transported to the site.

The rare earth elements extraction pilot project is being spearheaded by the Jamaica Bauxite Institute and Japanese company, Nippon Light Metals.

The project entails the processing of the red mud by-product from bauxite mining activities, to extract rare earth elements.

These elements, which are vital in the manufacturing of smart phones, plasma screens, and numerous other high-tech products, have been found in significantly high concentrations in Jamaica’s red mud deposits.