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Idaho and Montana could provide an additional supply for the rare earth metals that are required for electric-vehicle motors, mineral exploration company U.S. Rare Earths Inc. said.

Some rock samples yielded rare earth percentages of as high as 26 percent in Idaho's North Fork region, said the company, which owns claims to more than 16,000 acres of exploration land in the Rocky Mountain states. Exactly what that means is unclear, as the company didn't disclose further details on the amount of rare earths found or the time frame on making them useful for electric-motor production.

Still, the news gives hope to U.S. business proponents because about 90 percent of the world's rare earth metals production is controlled by China. In fact, in March, President Barack Obama said he would go through the World Trade Organization to address what he said was China's limitation on rare earth exports in order to make it easier for U.S. manufacturers to make electric motors.

With supply likely to remain constrained in the near term, Honda said in April it would try to recycle rare earth metals from the nickel-hydride batteries in its hybrids. Also, earlier this year, Toyota said it was developing a way to make electric-drive powertrains without using magnets that require pricey rare-earth metals.

Stay tuned...
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U.S. Rare Earths, Inc. Announces Substantial Results of Surface Sampling In Idaho and Montana

Findings As High As 26% Will Shape 2012 Drill Program

LONOKE, AR-June 20, 2012--U.S. Rare Earths, Inc., "USRE", (OTCBB: UREE), www.usrareearths.com, announced today that surface rock sampling conducted in the fourth quarter 2011 at its Idaho and Montana properties near Lemhi Pass and North Fork Idaho, along with results from sampling in 2009 and 2010 indicate the presence of Total Rare Earth (TRE) ranging as high as 26%. "The analytical results from ACT Labs, Canada -- along with the aero-mag we flew after acquiring these properties will shape our 2012 Drill Program," said Greg Schifrin, Chief Operating Officer.


TRE findings at the North Fork Project ranged from 1-10% at the Radiant Claim, 1-26% at the Cardinal Claim, 1-9% at the Silver King Claim, 1-10% at the Lower Lee Buck Claim, 1-8% at the Diamond Creek Project and 1-18% at the Sheep Creek Project. "The concentrations of TRE present from our rock sampling are substantial and present potential for a significant discovery," stated Michael D. Parnell, Chief Executive Officer. "As one of the two large US reserves listed in the Department of Energy's (DOE) Critical Materials Strategy Report, our rare earth properties could help supply the projected demand of the United States military and civilian green industries, thus assisting in eliminating the dependence the United States currently has on foreign sources," added Parnell.

In 2011, USRE announced the acquisition of the Idaho and Montana properties as well as the additional staking of 8,000 acres in and around the Lemhi Pass District and North Fork.

U.S. Rare Earths' properties in Idaho and Montana including Lemhi Pass have been recognized in the U.S. Department of Energy's Critical Materials Strategy publication to have significant showings of Heavy Rare Earth Elements, in particular for the five Rare Earths identified by DOE as being at "Critical Risk": Dysprosium, Europium, Neodymium, Terbium and Yttrium.

About U.S. Rare Earths, Inc:

U.S. Rare Earths, Inc. (USRE), (OTCBB: UREE), is a mineral exploration, mining and claims acquisition company based in Lonoke, AR. Formerly Colorado Rare Earths, Inc, the company holds over 16,000 acres of mining claims for rare-earth elements in Colorado, Idaho and Montana. In Colorado these include the Powderhorn Property in Gunnison County, and Wet Mountain Property in Fremont and Custer Counties. Additional claims include the Lemhi Pass Property in Lemhi County, Idaho and Beaverhead County, Montana; Diamond Creek and North Fork Properties in Lemhi County, Idaho and the Sheep Creek Property in Ravalli County, Montana. Rare earth elements are critical to many existing and emerging 21st century applications including clean-energy technologies such as hybrid cars and electric vehicles; high-technology applications including cell phones and digital music players; hard disk drives used in computers; microphones; fiber optics; lasers; and in addition, critical defense applications such as global positioning systems, radar and sonar; and advanced water treatment applications, including those for industrial, military, homeland security, domestic and foreign aid use. For more information visit www.usrareearths.com.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 33 Comments
      2 Wheeled Menace
      • 3 Years Ago
      Don't get me started. I haven't had a rage fit this morning yet.
      Smoking_dude
      • 3 Years Ago
      DIG BABY DIG. Same in Europe. Portugal has rich lithium sources. They could bouild an own industriy and make their own bail out . The alps have rare metal sources too. as china cuts down the export it got interesting to mine them.
      Dave D
      • 3 Years Ago
      The problem is competing on cost. China is much more lax on pollution regulations and it's hard to compete with that, plus their lower cost overall (wages, gov't subsidized industries, etc). But we're going to have to grow up and stop outsourcing everything we do for short term gains as a consumption based, service oriented economy. What they hell do we think is going to happen when we stop producing any THINGS and spend out time with jobs where I cut your hair in exchange for you washing my car. At some point, someone in this country is going to have to get back to production and manufacturing. You can't eat hair cuts or drive a car wash...we have to produce goods too.
        Spec
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Dave D
        Exactly. There are plenty of rare earth materials elsewhere. But China has such minimal environmental and labor protections that no one can compete with them.
        SNP
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Dave D
        My understanding wasnt on costs. It was on the fact that rare earths are difficult and expensive to mine. And the damage done to the environment is for the mining country's to bear. China was shipping out a very valuable resource in exchange for some money that they now have an abundance of. They figure if they're going to ruin their own land, might as well do it using the raw material themselves. On the flip side, since cost was never an issue, why not mine in canada and russia? they dont seem to mind shipping out their vast raw materials....
        Rob J
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Dave D
        Two words, higher tarrifs. Of course that would go against the wonders of free trade that makes the world shoot sunshine an lollipops out its butt.
          Dave D
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Rob J
          Rob, all I can say is this: In my world, everyone's a pony and they all eat rainbows and poop butterflies!
        Dave D
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Dave D
        Sigh....oh for an edit button. :-)
          Dave D
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Dave D
          Oh come on SNP....we'd never remove our own embarrassing comments just because we later regretted them! :-)
          SNP
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Dave D
          no edit button. that would be absurd in the middle of a convo log i just delete what i regret saying and wham, the topic/point/debate is messed up.
      Nick
      • 3 Years Ago
      How can EV motors be made without magnets?
        Dan Frederiksen
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Nick
        AC induction motors have no permanent magnets. they are widely used in industry and all tesla cars use them.
        Dave D
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Nick
        Nick, A switched reluctance motor http://green.autoblog.com/2011/06/28/need-rare-earth-metals-switched-reluctance-motors-dont/
          Jim_NJ
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Dave D
          Tesla uses induction motors in the in the Model S and upcoming Model X (although I'm sure their batteries use rare earths).
          JP
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Dave D
          Nope, no rare earths in most Lithium batteries, and the few that do use them have trace amounts as far as I know.
        Nick
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Nick
        Thanks.
        Dan Frederiksen
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Nick
        and btw car sized aluminium AC induction motors can be gotten for 150$.. and for a lean car it might be 100$ or less
      Smooth Motor
      • 3 Years Ago
      We need to do something before we go too far down the path. Otherwise, we are just trading our dependence on foreign oil to dependence on foreign rare earth metals.
        Spec
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Smooth Motor
        There is no real dependence. 1) We can make motors w/o rare earths. 2) We can always mine our own rare earths if we want to. We just get them from China because they don't seem to mind polluting their country and killing/poisoning their people to mine them for a low price.
        Elmo Biggins
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Smooth Motor
        Well...you only buy the electric motor (with rare earth metals) once...when you buy the car. Explain how that compares to the necessity of continuously refueling a gas car? If China stopped all shipments of rare earth metals tomorrow it would only slow down EV production till a new supplier came online. The BEVs already made and sold would still run just fine. No dependence what so ever.
      Rob J
      • 3 Years Ago
      I would say its a shame that they would dig up those beautiful mountains so we can keep driving our cars but I suppose I would rather bring the environmental impacts of production to North America where it can be better regulated and controlled. Not to mention that by having all these mines in China we are so simply removing ourselves from the source of our goods and making it appear as though they just appear out of thin air in Wal-Mart.
        Anne
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Rob J
        Look at what they're donig to Canada or Nigeria to keep our cars running.
          Dave D
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Anne
          Oh come on 2WM....I love it when you go off on a rampage :-)
      Val
      • 3 Years Ago
      Companies should try to avoid using rare earths in electric motors and wind turbines, tesla and enercon (a german wind company) have shown it is possible. Rare earths have other applications such as electronics and solar panels, and batteries (some chemistries use them) that cannot be substituted.
      JP
      • 3 Years Ago
      Tesla: "Rare earths? We don't need no stinkin' rare earths!"
      alphac2005
      • 3 Years Ago
      We need to see business in this country support our country. While China produces 90% or so of the rare earth metals, they only actually have about a quarter of the reserves globally, so we're trading dependence just like Car Guy says in his comment unless something is done here.
        Elmo Biggins
        • 3 Years Ago
        @alphac2005
        Trading dependence? Then a single full tank of gas will last for the lifetime of the car (tank)? No comparison.
        Anne
        • 3 Years Ago
        @alphac2005
        This is not really comparable. An electric motor does not burn rare earths like it is oil.
      Marcopolo
      • 3 Years Ago
      Rare earths are not actually that rare. But apart from some types of EV's, the are very important in the Electrionics and defense industries. But relax, the PRC doesn't control 90% of the worlds 'rare earth'. ! The PRC sells rare earth at prices that discourage production elsewhere. The PRC is able to dominate rare earth production for three reasons, 1)Cheap and uncomplaining labour 2) No enviro-pollution restrictions 3) Rare earths are by-product of other mining. Australia, has bigger reserves of Rare earths the the PRC. Unfortunately, is in the centre of a vast in inaccessible wasteland ! But, here the good news ! A highly mechanized method of extraction has been developed, On site processing allows the tailing, and reining dross to be buried on site, with little environmental disruption. Transport to a harbour is feasible by airship. The previous conservative Australian government denied PRC corporation from buying mining rights. This is a gun pointed at Beijing's head, continue a hard line 'rare earth' policy, and new mines will become economic. Once in full production the new mines will remove PRC's importance.
      Alexi
      • 3 Years Ago
      Yeah, not rare.... just costly to mine and damaging to the environment. Of course the mining going on in China has zero thought for the environment (hence the lower price allowing them to control the market), but once mining takes off in other parts of the world innovation in mining methods are a necessity.
      mapoftazifosho
      • 3 Years Ago
      What if we didn't need rare earth metals for battery production? http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/01/23/us-toyota-rare-earth-idUSTRE80M0JK20120123 http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/06/22/us-rareearths-alternatives-idUSBRE85L0YB20120622
        mazdamattyp5
        • 3 Years Ago
        @mapoftazifosho
        You're right. Tesla doesn't use any rare earth metals in the motors in the S. I also believe Toyota is looking to switch motor manufacturers to start using these as well.
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