Rare Element Resources receives $4.4 million grant from Wyoming Energy Authority in support of Rare Earth Demonstration Plant Project
November 21, 2022 – Littleton, Colorado – Rare Element Resources Ltd. (the “Company” or “RER”) (OTCQB: REEMF) is pleased to announce that it has been awarded a $4.4 million grant from the Wyoming Energy Authority (the “WEA”) to be utilized for the advancement of the Company’s rare earth element processing and separation demonstration plant project in Upton, Wyoming. The grant is a cost reimbursement award for future expenditures related to the project, which is also supported by the U.S. Department of Energy (the “DOE”) through a previously announced financial award. The total project cost is approximately $44 million, with $21.9 million provided through the DOE.
Brent Berg, President and CEO of the Company, stated, “We are very pleased that the WEA, upon the approval of the University of Wyoming Energy Resources Council, recognizes the critical importance of this timely project for the trajectory of the rare earth industry in the United States. Wyoming’s financial support exemplifies its commitment to critical materials, specifically rare earth element production. We cannot imagine a more favorable location for this important project and look forward to working with the WEA and others in the state of Wyoming, including the University of Wyoming School of Energy Resources, for many years to come. As we progress our demonstration plant through licensing, construction, and operations in the near-term, we will plan for the advancement of a commercial-scale plant to support the Bear Lodge deposit in the future.” Mr. Berg added, “We understand, as does Wyoming, that our project will serve as a cornerstone for the rare earth industry in Wyoming and America while providing a venue for worker training in rare earth processing and separation.”
The rare earth processing and separation plant project, led by General Atomics, an affiliate of the Company’s largest shareholder, Synchron, is nearing the final design review milestone, which is expected to be complete by the end of this year. This milestone will allow the Company to advance through the first go/no go decision point with the DOE. Upon the DOE’s approval to proceed, the WEA grant will be available to the Company, subject to the details to be contained in a memorandum of understanding between the Company and the State of Wyoming.
Glen Murrell, Executive Director of the WEA stated, “The need for domestic rare earth elements is a necessity for both our ‘all-of-the-above’ energy strategy and also our energy security. Given that Wyoming is home to one of the highest-grade rare earth deposits in North America, we felt supporting Rare Element Resources’ demonstration plant in Upton was vital.” Mr. Murrell added, “We look forward to supporting this project and supporting the development of the critical minerals industry in Wyoming.”
The demonstration plant will utilize the Company’s proprietary technology and is expected to produce commercial-grade neodymium/praseodymium (Nd/Pr) high-purity oxide that is used in producing high-strength permanent magnets. These high-strength permanent magnets are a key component in the manufacture of electric vehicles and wind turbines, among other technology uses. Previously stockpiled material from the Company’s Bear Lodge deposit in northeast Wyoming will be processed in the plant.
Synchron and General Atomics are privately held companies engaged in the development and production of advanced technology products and systems for the energy and defense sectors. General Atomics is an affiliate of Synchron, the Company’s majority shareholder.
Rare Element Resources Ltd. is a publicly traded, strategic materials company focused on delivering rare earth products for technology, energy and defense applications by advancing the Bear Lodge Critical Rare Earth Project in northeast Wyoming. Bear Lodge is a significant mineralized district containing many of the less common, more valuable, critical rare earths that are essential for high-strength permanent magnets, electronics, fiber optics, laser systems for medical technology and defense, as well as technologies like electric vehicles, solar panels and wind turbines.