Monitoring programs continue of both air and water quality as the U.S. Forest continues their work on the
 draft Environmental Impact Statement for the site. 

Environmental Programs

Environmental/Safety Policy

Rare Element recognizes the need for the rapid exploration and development of rare earth projects to help meet growing domestic demand and realizes it must be done to minimize the impact to human health and the environment.

Therefore, Rare Element will conduct exploration and mine development activities to ensure that:

  • Public and employee safety are recognized as top priorities and are equal in importance to production and cost. Rare Element believes that ALL accidents are preventable.
  • Risks to employees, contractors, communities, and the environment are identified, assessed, minimized, and managed responsibly.
  • Environmental, health, and safety standards are met through routine diligent company audits and regulatory agency reviews.
  • Stakeholders receive updated project information on a routine basis via meetings, mailings, and electronic media.
  • Cultural resources located on public and private land are identified and respected. 

Proposed Mitigation Measures

Over the last several years, Rare Element has collected baseline environmental data and identified actions that can help mitigate the impact of its operations on the environment.  Steps that have been identified include:

Air Quality

  • Road watering and reduced speed limits for dust control.
  • PUG plant will be enclosed with wet suppression system.
  • Tailing storage facility will be covered with soil to reduce dust.

Hydrology & Water Quality

  • Use of erosion control measures.
  • Hydrologic controls of surface and groundwater.
  • Elimination of water discharge from PUG plant due to recycling.
  • Protection of natural drainage areas with check dams and riprap.
  • Implementation of rapid stabilization practices on disturbed areas.
  • Preservation of topsoil for reuse in revegetation.

Scenic Values

  • Implement progressive reclamation program.
  • Use of downward illumination lighting for nighttime operations.

Fish & Wildlife

  • Environmental awareness training for employees and contractors.
  • Traffic routes will be restricted.
  • Existing snags will remain in place whenever possible.
  • Breeding/nesting areas will be protected during breeding seasons.
  • 6 ft. chain link fence around PUG plant with 24 hour manned guard house.

Cultural Resources

  • Avoidance or mitigation of identified cultural resources.
  • Implementation of Unanticipated Discovery Plan for potential discoveries during construction or operations.

Vegetation

  • Native vegetation would be preserved when possible.
  • Re-vegetation will occur as soon as practical.

Reclamation

Reclamation is the process of restoring land that has been disturbed by mining activity to a similar pre-mining topography and prior land use or an alternative beneficial use agreed upon by project stakeholders.  The preparation and planning for mine reclamation activities occurs as part of the environmental assessment and permitting process.  Throughout the life of the mine, reclamation activities will be ongoing, with the majority being undertaken once mining is completed.

Rare Element has already undertaken engineering studies to evaluate alternatives for reclamation of both the mine and processing sites.

Bear lodge Project after 40 years of mining

Rendering of anticipated disturbance after 40 years of mining

Anticipated Bear Lodge Project site after reclamation Rendering of anticipated site after reclamation Hydromet site after 40 years of mining

Rendering of anticipated disturbance at Hydromet site after 40 years of mining

Hydromet site after reclamation

Rendering of anticipated Hydromet site after reclamation