Rare Earths Heat Up with Crackdown
Source: Resource Investor (9/1/11)
"China's goal is to consolidate all production into three state-owned giants. Authorities have been burning refineries, arresting offenders, and offering rewards for others."
Chinese authorities are enforcing one of the most aggressive clampdowns in history in an effort to close down illegal rare earth mines in China's southern Jiangxi province, it is said, for environmental reasons. The Middle Kingdom now accounts for 97% of the world's rare earth supplies, much of it produced by unlicensed rural farmers and organized crime.
The environmental damage caused by these small operators is enormous, with small leaching pits dotting the countryside in rare earth rich areas, seriously polluting local drinking supplies.
China's goal is to consolidate all production into three state owned giants, Baogang, Chinalco, and Minmetals, which, it is hoped, will act more responsibly. Authorities have been burning refineries, arresting offenders, and offering out rewards for others. . .View full article