GE turns to Australia for critical renewable materials


Shrewdly signed at the Sydney Energy Forum on Tuesday, where energy ministers from Australia and the United States were promoting precisely these kinds of cross-country partnerships, GE has agreed to negotiate the purchase of NdPr, a rare earth needed for renewable technologies, from Arafura Resources’ Nolans Project.

The Nolan’s Project, located in the Northern Territory about 135 kilometres north of Alice Springs, proposes to build a mine and processing plant to supply a significant proportion of the world’s NdPr demand, used for rare earth permanent magnets in electric vehicles and wind turbines.

The Nolan project could support a value chain supplying nearly 5% of the global demand for the rare earth over projected project life of 38 years, GE said in its media release.

At this stage, the agreement takes the form of a non-binding Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), with GE saying a definitive and binding contract would be subject to Arafura securing funding for the Nolan project and of course its successful commissioning.

Since the agreement was signed at the major forum, Australian ministers and the US Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm attended the signing. Federal Minister for Trade and Tourism, Don Farrell, described the agreement as showing the real potential for Australia to foster strong commercial critical minerals partnerships with our major trading partners.

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