Senator Murkowski Advances Federal Rare Earth Bill and Comments on UCore’s Bokan Project
June 29, 2010 – Ucore Rare Metals Inc. (TSX-V: UCU), (“Ucore” or the “Company”) is pleased to report that Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), has introduced a federal bill addressing the impending rare earth metals supply crisis in the United States, and has commented on Ucore’s Bokan-Dotson Ridge heavy rare earth project as a direct response to that crisis.
Senator Murkowski’s Rare Earth Supply-Chain Technology and Resource Transformation (RESTART) Act of 2010 targets the reestablishment of a competitive domestic rare earth mining, processing and refining industry to support the growth of clean technology, manufacturing and the defense sectors. Senator Murkowski’s bill, submitted to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, is a companion to legislation introduced in the House by Representative Mike Coffman (R-Colorado) in March, 2010.
China currently accounts for more than 95 percent of the world’s production of rare earths, and has indicated its intent to progressively withdraw export of these metals to the United States and other world markets over the next five years. The Murkowski legislation addresses the staged Chinese withdrawal, authorizing a multi-agency task force to assist federal agencies in reviewing and approving permits for specific rare earth mines located within the U.S., calling on the Energy Department to issue loan guarantees for U.S.-based rare earth projects, and pushing several agencies to increase research and development of these critical strategic minerals.
“These metals are increasingly important to our military, strategic, and economic priorities due to their use in clean energy technologies and many other high-tech applications,” said Murkowski. “China recently moved to implement rules announced in March that will cut production and exportation of rare earths in an effort to raise world prices for the minerals. Rather than sit on our hands while China corners the market on these strategic minerals, we can and should pursue timely production of the rare earth supplies that exist within our own borders.”
In her Senate address, Senator Murkowski goes on to directly comment on Ucore’s Bokan-Dotson Ridge heavy rare earth deposit in Alaska, as a complementary source to Molycorp’s primarily light rare earth enriched deposit at Mountain Pass, California, and Bokan’s central importance to American efforts to become independent of China’s hold on the sector.
“Ucore Uranium is continuing exploration of a large rare earth deposit found near Bokan Mountain in Alaska, about 37 miles from Ketchikan,” continued Murkowski. “Ucore’s new Alaska subsidiary,
Rare Earth One LLC, has been working to study the deposit on Dotson Ridge at Bokan Mountain since 2007. The U.S. Bureau of Mines more than 20 years ago estimated the site contains at least 374 million pounds of recoverable rare earths, which is more than enough to break China’s stranglehold on the market and protect America’s access to the rare earths that are vital to the production of cutting-edge technologies in this country.”
For more information on Senator Murkowski’s introduction of this legislation, please Click Here.
The United States is among the world’s largest consumers of rare earth metals for industrial and technology applications. The United States Magnetic Materials Association (USMMA), a coalition of companies representing domestic high performance magnet producers and suppliers, has issued a commentary on the new legislation, applauding Senator Murkowski’s initiative in drawing increased attention to an impending crisis in the domestic supply of the technology metals.
“We’re pleased that Senator Murkowski has taken a leadership role in tabling this important federal legislation,” said Jim McKenzie, President and CEO of Ucore. “The Bokan project is increasingly being recognized as one of two critical domestic deposits with the potential to allow the United States to become self sufficient across the full spectrum of rare earths. Whereas Molycorp’s Mountain Pass facility has an abundance of light rare earths, Bokan provides the alternate piece of a crucial domestic supply puzzle, with its predominant skew towards the highly valuable heavy rare earths.”
Ucore Rare Metals Inc. is a junior exploration company focused on establishing REE and uranium resources through exploration and property acquisition. Ucore’s primary focus is the Rare Earth One operated Bokan Mountain- Dotson Ridge rare earth element and uranium project. The project is located on the southern part of the Prince of Wales Island in southeastern Alaska, with excellent deep water access and proximity to major sea and rail shipping routes across North America and to Asia. A 1998 study by the U.S. Bureau of Mines, estimated 374M lbs of contained rare earth oxides for the Bokan area, with heavy rare earths comprising approximately 50% of total rare earth content (Barker and Warner, OFR 33-89; non NI 43-101 compliant). Ucore is conducting the next phase of its exploration and drill program at Bokan, commencing in July, 2010.
For further information, please contact Mr. Jim McKenzie, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company at: (902) 482-5214
Signed “Jim McKenzie”
Jim McKenzie, President
This press release includes certain statements that may be deemed “forward-looking statements”. All statements in this release, other than statements of historical facts, that address future exploration drilling, exploration activities and events or developments that the Company expects, are forward looking statements. Although the Company believes the expectations expressed in such forward-looking statements are based on reasonable assumptions, such statements are not guarantees of future performance and actual results or developments may differ materially from those in forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in forward-looking statements include exploitation and exploration successes, continued availability of financing, and general economic, market or business conditions.
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