Ohmium International, a company that designs, manufactures, and deploys advanced Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) electrolyzers, is collaborating with Chilean company H2 Green Mining to develop green hydrogen projects to help decarbonize mining operations in the country. H2 Green Mining is a joint venture between Susterra, a subsidiary of the engineering... Read more →

Benchmark forecasts 2024 lithium demand to grow by 32% year-on-year Benchmark forecasts 2024 lithium demand to grow by 32% year-on-year

Benchmark expects lithium demand to increase by 32% this year, compared to 2023. However, increases in production by industry majors as well as new supply means the market is set to be in a small surplus of around 8,000 tonnes this year, Benchmark forecasts. Arcadium Lithium said it would increase... Read more →

Vulcan Energy Resources announced the Start of Production (SOP) of the first lithium chloride (LiCl) product at Vulcan’s Lithium Extraction Optimization Plant (LEOP) in Landau, Germany (earlier post), marking the first lithium chemicals domestically produced from a local source in Europe, for Europe. LEOP is showing strong early results with... Read more →

A recent study led by researchers from the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv), the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) and the non-profit conservation organization Re:wild shows that the threat of mining to the great ape population in Africa has been greatly underestimated. Am open-access paper on the work... Read more →

Electra Battery Materials Corporation and Eurasian Resources Group S.A.R.L. (ERG), a diversified natural resources group headquartered in Luxembourg, signed a binding letter of intent for long-term supply of ERG’s cobalt hydroxide to North America’s first battery-grade cobalt sulfate refinery. The agreement, effective 1 April 2024, supports efforts to onshore the... Read more →

European Council give final approval on the critical raw materials act

The European Council adopted the regulation to establish a framework to ensure a secure and sustainable supply of critical raw materials, better known as the Critical Raw Materials Act (CRMA). This is the last step in the decision-making procedure. Following the Council’s approval the European Parliament’s position, the legislative act... Read more →

Australian Strategic Materials announced that it received a non-binding and conditional Letter of Interest (LoI) from the Export-Import Bank of the United States (US EXIM) to provide a debt funding package of up to US$600 million for the construction and execution phase of the rare earths and critical minerals Dubbo... Read more →

Cummins Inc. has commissioned a diesel-hybrid mining truck in partnership with one of China’s leading rigid mining truck manufacturers, North Hauler Joint Stock Co., Ltd. (NHL). The hybrid NHL NTH260, a 220 metric ton payload mining truck, rolled off the production line in January and is headed to Baiyun Iron... Read more →

Fortescue’s recently deployed electric excavator has reached the milestone of one million tonnes moved since it became operational. Over the past three months, the excavator had been running at partial capacity while the site team familiarized itself with the new piece of equipment. Now operating at full-speed, its performance continues... Read more →

Discovery Lithium to acquire private lithium explorer Midex Resources

Discovery Lithium, a Canadian exploration company, signed a letter of intent (LOI) to acquire a 100% interest in Midex Resources, another Canadian lithium exploration company. Discovery Lithium would acquire a 43,000-hectare land position in known lithium-bearing pegmatite fields with resources within northwestern Ontario, including the Crescent Lake Project. The Crescent... Read more →

Australia conditionally approves US$533M debt finance package to support Nolans rare earth project

Australia-based Arafura Rare Earths Limited secured conditional Commonwealth Government approval for a debt financing package of US$533 million to progress the Nolans Project in the Northern Territory. Arafura’s Nolans Project is a rare earth ore to oxide mine and processing facility. The Nolans Project will encompass a mine, process plant... Read more →

DOE LPO makes conditional commitment for $2.26B loan for Thacker Pass lithium project

The US Department of Energy’s (DOE) Loan Programs Office (LPO) announced a conditional commitment to Lithium Americas Corp’s subsidiary, Lithium Nevada Corp., for a $2.26 billion loan to help finance the construction of a lithium carbonate processing plant at Thacker Pass in Humboldt County, Nevada. (Earlier post.) The project is... Read more →

UNCTAD revamping old NRIE proposal for developing countries to digitalize and share data on natural resources

Demand for energy transition minerals such as lithium, cobalt, nickel and copper is escalating. For example, the demand for copper in clean energy systems is forecast to increase from 23% of total demand across all applications to more than 42% by 2050, according to UNCTAD (United Nations Conference on Trade... Read more →

Zelandez, a provider of technology to the lithium brine industry, announced the availability of its new Borehole Formation Tester (BFT) to lithium developers worldwide. The BFT is the slimmest pump-through formation tester and is designed to specifically address lithium miners’ needs by measuring aquifer pressure, analyzing fluids downhole in real-time,... Read more →

A technology developed by researchers at the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) that can effectively capture heavy metals from acid mine drainage and municipal water supplies and extract beneficial critical minerals such as aluminum, nickel and rare earth elements (REE) from water, has been granted a US patent. The patent... Read more →

Syrah Resources Limited signed a binding offtake agreement with to Posco Future M Co., Ltd for natural graphite fines from Syrah’s Balama Graphite Operations in Mozambique. (Earlier post.) The offtake agreement is an important development in the company’s sales strategy to transition Balama natural graphite sales to a more geographically... Read more →

USGS making $5M available to research critical minerals and rare earth elements found in mine waste

The US Geological Survey (USGS) is now soliciting proposals for fiscal year 2024 cooperative agreements to collect data on mine waste. Mine waste represents a potentially valuable source of critical minerals and rare earth elements that were not targeted in prior mining operations and that can be developed without impacting... Read more →

Mitsubishi to form JV with Frontier Lithium in Canada; first investment in lithium mine

Mitsubishi Corporation entered into a binding agreement with Frontier Lithium, a Canadian lithium mining company, to form a new joint venture company dedicated to developing the PAK Lithium Project located in Ontario, Canada. MC will acquire a 7.5% equity interest in the JV in exchange for cash considerations of C$25... Read more →

Canada Rare Earth establishes rare earth supply chain operations in DRC

Canada Rare Earth Corp. has established rare earth supply operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) marking a significant milestone in its expansion strategy. The proprietary operations in the DRC will be conducted through its wholly-owned subsidiary, Simba Essential Minerals S.A.S., incorporated in December 2023. By establishing our proprietary... Read more →

Veracio, an orebody knowledge technology company that formerly operated as Boart Longyear’s Geological Data Services division, is introducing new and refreshed orebody knowledge (OBK) tools—TruScan 2, TruProbe and Strata—to improve, automate, and digitally transform orebody sciences in exploration, resource definition and production globally. TruScan 2, featuring HyperXRF, a mineralogical solution... Read more →

On the back of offtake agreements with Panasonic Energy and General Motors Holdings (earlier post), Nouveau Monde Graphite (NMG) has closed Mitsui & Co. and Pallinghurst Bond Limited for an aggregate combined investment of US$87.5 million to advance NMG’s development toward commercial operations. Map of NMG’s integrated extraction and advanced... Read more →

Australia-based South32 Limited announced final investment approval for the Taylor deposit, the first development at its Hermosa zinc project in Arizona. Hermosa was the first mining project added to the US Government’s FAST-41 process and is currently the only advanced project in the United States which could supply two federally... Read more →

DuPont announced that FilmTec LiNE-XD nanofiltration membrane elements, the company’s first offering dedicated to lithium brine purification, was named a finalist in the 2024 Edison Awards in the Resource Recovery & Environmental Conservation category. Lithium brine purification is critical to producing batteries needed for electrification. FilmTec LiNE-XD elements can help... Read more →

Fluorspar demand from the lithium-ion battery sector is expected to exceed 1.6 million tonnes by 2030, representing a significant portion of the overall market, according to Benchmark’s new Fluorspar Market Outlook. This mineral, primarily composed of calcium fluoride (CaF2), holds potential beyond its traditional uses in refrigerants, steelmaking and aluminum... Read more →

BASF and hydroGEOPHYSICS Consulting partner to enhance secondary copper recovery through novel mining technologies

Global chemical company BASF and hydroGEOPHYSICS Inc. (HGI), a leading provider of geophysical services to the mining industry, announced an exclusive partnership aimed at combining expertise in mineral processing, hydrometallurgy, and deep well injection. The collaboration aims to optimize copper extraction in the mining industry by utilizing HGI’s geophysical techniques... Read more →

E3 Lithium, an Alberta-based lithium developer, announced the discovery of higher lithium concentrations in the Nisku Aquifer (the Nisku) through a new six-well sampling program conducted late in 2023. E3 Lithium sampled brine in the Nisku from six well locations in its Clearwater Project Area that outlined lithium concentrations as... Read more →

Rio Tinto to drive development of Australia’s largest solar farm at Gladstone

Rio Tinto will drive development of Australia’s largest solar power project near Gladstone, after agreeing to buy all electricity from the 1.1GW Upper Calliope Solar Farm to provide renewable power to Rio Tinto’s Gladstone operations. The agreement will bring more renewable power into one of Australia’s most important industrial hubs... Read more →

Thailand discovers lithium resources; size in question

According to a Nikkei report, Thai officials reported the discovery of lithium deposits that they at the time of the announcement described as the world’s third-largest reserves. Lithium deposits were found at two locations in the southern province of Phang-Nga—the Ruangkiat and Bang Etu sites. According to initial reports, the... Read more →

Samsung SDI to invest US$18.5M for 8.7% stake in Canada Nickel; right to purchase 10% of Crawford project for US$100.5M

Canada Nickel Company entered into a subscription Agreement with Samsung SDI to make a US$18.5-million investment in Canada Nickel at a price of C$1.57 per Common Share. Upon closing of the private placement, Samsung SDI will own approximately 15.6 million shares of the common shares of Canada Nickel, representing approximately... Read more →

Leading supplier of lithium and lithium derivatives Albemarle is cutting its planned capex in 2024 from approximately $2.1 billion in 2023 to the range of $1.6 billion to $1.8 billion as the company adjusts to changing end-market conditions, particularly in the lithium value chain. Morgan Stanley’s “Best of Lithium Index” shows... Read more →

Environmental organizations urge more study and stronger regulations on remining

Earthworks, Transport and Environment (T&E), and Earthjustice released an independent peer-reviewed open-access report on remining published in Minerals that is considered one of the first and most comprehensive literature reviews on the issue. “Remining” refers to the process of using mine waste as a source material to extract minerals or... Read more →

Norway’s Storting (Norwegian parliament) endorsed the Government’s proposal to open parts of the Norwegian continental shelf for exploration for and production of seabed minerals. Norway is the first country in Europe to approve such seabed mining plans. A section of a sulfide sample, obtained during an expedition to the Mohns... Read more →

Argus: Weak nickel fundamentals to weigh on EV market

In an end-of-year outlook, consultancy Argus forecasts that demand will grow in 2024 for nickel-based battery cathodes, their component ingredient nickel sulfate and input feedstocks after a slowdown this year. However, Argus adds, supply is set to outpace this growth, with a ramp up in mixed hydroxide precipitate (MHP) and... Read more →

CATL subsidiary to invest $420M in Indonesia nickel mining and EV battery industry

The Jakarta Post reports that China-based Ningbo Contemporary Brunp Lygend (CBL)—a subsidiary of battery giant Contemporary Amperex Technology Limited (CATL)—will invest US$420 million in Indonesia’s nickel mining and EV battery manufacturing industries. Coordinating Maritime and Investment Affairs Minister Luhut Binsar Panjaitan said the deal involved a partnership between CBL and... Read more →

Nornickel’s digitalization firm issues tokens for platinum group metals

Nornickel’s metals digitalization firm, GPF Investments (GPFI), has issued four types of tokens linked to platinum group metals—e.g., platinum, palladium, ruthenium, and iridium—on the Atomyze blockchain platform. This issuance includes 1,255 digital financial assets, equivalent to approximately RUB 2.5 million (US$28,000), with each token representing one gram of metal. The... Read more →

Eramet and Vibrantz Technologies announce long-term manganese ore supply agreement for the production of manganese-based battery technologies

Eramet, the leading producer of manganese ore, and Vibrantz Technologies announced a 10-year agreement whereby Eramet will supply Vibrantz with manganese ore, an essential raw material used in Vibrantz’s portfolio of manganese technologies for lithium-ion battery and other applications. The agreement builds on a 20-year Eramet-Vibrantz partnership to create a... Read more →

Lake Resources announces results of definitive feasibility study for Kachi lithium brine project in Argentina

Australia-based Lake Resources announced the results of its Definitive Feasibility Study (DFS) for Phase One of the Kachi lithium brine project in Argentina. Kachi uses ion exchange Direct Lithium Extraction (DLE); the process design was developed in partnership with Lilac Solutions. Project and resource highlights include: Total resource is estimated... Read more →

Uranium One Group to install pilot DLE plant in Uyuni salt flat in Bolivia

Empresa Pública Nacional Estratégica de Yacimientos de Litio Bolivianos (YLB) signed an agreement with Russia-based Uranium One Group to install a pilot plant scalable to semi-industrial production with Direct Lithium Extraction (DLE) technology in the Uyuni salt flat (Potosí) with a production capacity of 14,000 tons per year. Under the... Read more →

HummingbirdEV, a provider of commercial vehicle electrification systems, announced that 393 explosion-proof electric mining vehicles powered by its next-generation electric vehicle (EV) technologies under a licensing agreement with Keshi Group, the leading manufacturer and marketer of coal mining auxiliary transport technology and equipment, are currently in operation in various underground... Read more →

Lithium developer Livent Corporation has acquired a minority stake in the parent company of ILiAD Technologies. ILiAD Technologies’ parent company is a subsidiary of EnergySource Minerals (ESM), a leading developer of lithium projects in the Salton Sea Known Geothermal Resource Area in California. ILiAD Technologies will seek to commercialize and... Read more →

In a new report, “Copper Demand for Cars 2024-2034: Trends, Utilization, Forecasts”, IDTechEx forecasts that automotive copper demand will reach 5MT (1MT = 1 billion kilograms) of annual demand in 2034. Autonomy and electrification will drive the growth from today’s demand, but the component that dominates the demand will still... Read more →

General Motors and Komatsu will co-develop a hydrogen fuel cell power module for Komatsu’s 930E electric drive mining truck, the world’s best-selling ultra-class haul truck. GM, a leader in hydrogen fuel cell technology, and Komatsu, a global manufacturer of mining and construction equipment, will jointly design and validate the technology.... Read more →

Rio Tinto Kennecott to fully transition to renewable diesel in 2024

Rio Tinto will replace its entire fossil diesel consumption with renewable diesel at its Kennecott copper operation in Utah from 2024. Kennecott’s fleet of 90 haul trucks and all heavy machinery will begin to transition to renewable diesel in the first quarter of 2024, along with consumption from the concentrator,... Read more →

Rio Tinto provided an update at its Investor Seminar on the world-class Simandou iron ore project in Guinea, Africa, which is being progressed in partnership with CIOH, Winning Consortium Simandou (WCS), Baowu and the Republic of Guinea. Simfer Jersey Limited is a joint venture between the Rio Tinto Group (53%)... Read more →

T&E report finds automakers in EU market have secured less than one-fifth of key battery metals needed until 2030

Carmakers in the European market have secured less than a fifth (16%) of the key battery metals they will need until 2030, according to analysis of publicly disclosed contracts by the European environmental NGO Transport & Environment (T&E). Only Tesla and BYD are doing enough to guarantee supplies of cobalt,... Read more →

Atlas Lithium, a US-based exploration company with projects in Brazil, secured key strategic partnerships with Yahua Lithium, a supplier to Tesla, and Chengxin Lithium, a supplier to BYD. Together, these companies will invest US$10 million in common shares at $29.77 per share (a 10% premium to recent VWAP) and prepay... Read more →

Rio Tinto has approved a $77-million pre-feasibility study (PFS) to progress development of the Rhodes Ridge project, one of the world’s best undeveloped iron ore deposits, in the East Pilbara in Western Australia. Location of Rhodes Ridge in Western Australia. The commencement of a PFS follows completion of an Order... Read more →

Australia has a unique billion-dollar opportunity to create a new industry to support mine closures and transitions, generating employment opportunities for regional and Indigenous communities, according to a new report developed by the national science agency, CSIRO. New insights drawn from mining industry databases and CSIRO analysis project an annual... Read more →

Rio Tinto approves new solar farm and battery storage to power its Amrun bauxite operations on Cape York

Rio Tinto has approved a new 12.4MW solar farm and 8.8MVa/2.1MWh of battery storage to provide renewable energy for the Amrun bauxite operations near Weipa in Queensland, Australia. The 12.4MW solar farm and battery storage are part of Rio Tinto’s global decarbonization strategy and ongoing efforts to reduce emissions at... Read more →

China is rich in rare earth elements and has dominated global rare earth mining and production since the 1990s. Its neighbor, Myanmar, is also a country rich in rare earth elements. In 2012, China’s Central Government implemented a strategy to shift away from mining and to focus instead on the... Read more →