GREENWOOD VILLAGE, Colo.--()--Molycorp Minerals, LLC announced today that it has begun preparations for renewed mining of the world class Rare Earth ore deposit at its Mountain Pass, California production facility. Molycorp, which is currently producing approximately four million pounds of Rare Earth products per year, announced earlier this year that it was restarting production at Mountain Pass with plans to ramp up annual production to 40 million pounds of Rare Earth products over a three-year period.
Molycorp’s Mountain Pass Plant Manager, Rocky Smith, stated that, “Consistent with our plans to ramp up production to 40 million pounds per year by 2012, we have begun the process of readying the Mountain Pass ore body for active mining. The first portion of the process will be to dewater the mine, which involves the removal of water that has accumulated at the bottom of the mine since conclusion of the last mining operations in 2002. This will be followed by the removal of overburden to expose an area of fresh ore that will be needed to feed Molycorp’s production beginning in 2012. The dewatering process is expected to take approximately 12 months, followed by an additional 12 months for removal of overburden, which will allow us to begin mining, crushing and milling fresh ore in plenty of time to meet our needs for full production in 2012.”
Molycorp CEO, Mark Smith (not related to Rocky Smith), explained that because the Rare Earth ore body at Mountain Pass is so rich, continuous mining is not necessary in order to produce enough ore to keep Molycorp’s Rare Earth production facilities running full time. Mr. Smith went on to say, “The amount of previously mined material stockpiled at Mountain Pass from prior mining is sufficient to support our planned production rate until 2012 at which time we will conduct a mining campaign to produce and stockpile enough new ore to support operations for an additional two to three years. Thereafter, we will conduct mining campaigns at two or three-year intervals, which should be sufficient to support full production of finished Rare Earth products at the planned rate of 40 million pounds per year.” Mr. Smith concluded by saying, “As the only western producer of Rare Earth materials, Molycorp is proud to be playing a key role in helping to assure America’s energy, economic and national security, by assuring a secure supply of these critical and indispensable materials that are ultimately utilized in the production of hybrid and electric cars, wind power turbines, various high-tech applications and numerous advanced defense systems.”
Molycorp Minerals, LLC, with headquarters in Greenwood Village, Colorado, is a private, U.S. rare earth producer and technology company. As the owner of the world’s most abundant rare earth deposit outside of China, and a leader in rare earth technology, Molycorp Minerals supplies a variety of rare earth materials that are critical to emerging Green Energy technologies, High-Tech applications and numerous Defense Systems. As the leading western supplier, Molycorp Minerals markets rare earth materials from its world class rare earth deposit in Mountain Pass, California.
For more information, please contact Molycorp Minerals at +1-303-843-8040 or visit www.Molycorp.com.