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Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Great news for West Virginia -- and America

West Virginia's divorce from the slave state Virginia (which went for Hillary) helped turn the tide in the Civil War. West Virginia provides the military with an outsized portion of its military personnel. And finally, West Virginia coal, oil, and natural gas help make the nation energy independent.

But wait. There's more.

Scientists believe that Almost Heaven may have high concentrations of rare earth elements (REE) that it can bring to the market.

China has a monopoly on rare earth production, controlling 95% of the market, according to Market Place.

In the last 25 years, these elements have become more important in manufacturing.

Ah, but researchers at West Virginia University have good news, America.

From the Department of Energy:
Concentrations of rare earths at 300 parts per million are integral to the commercial viability of extracting REEs from coal and coal by-products, making NETL’s finding particularly significant in the effort to develop economical domestic supplies of these elements.
The discovery was made in partnership with West Virginia University (WVU), the University of Kentucky (UK), Tetra Tech, and the XLight Corporation. WVU explored acid mine drainage from bituminous coal mines in the Northern and Central Appalachian Coal Basins, while Tetra Tech looked at bituminous, subbituminous, and anthracite coal from the same basins. Meanwhile, UK analyzed western Kentucky bituminous coal in the Illinois Coal Basin, and XLight Corporation investigated coal-related materials in the Eastern Pennsylvania Anthracite Region.
These findings could encourage technology developers to recover REEs from these basins by helping them find high quality feedstocks — the raw materials needed for REE recovery processes. Higher REE concentrations in the feedstock will improve the prospect of producing higher-purity REE materials. A separate research initiative is focusing on DOE cost-shared research projects to design, develop, and test technology to actually recover REEs from coal-related materials in a variety of American coal basins.
These recovery projects began in October 2017 and will use materials from the high-REE containing coal basins as feedstocks. They include WVU using acid mine drainage from bituminous mines in the Northern and Central Appalachian Coal basins as a feedstock, with final design and construction of bench-scale test facilities beginning in January 2018. A second bench-scale facility is being designed for construction by the University of North Dakota to recover REEs from lignitic material.
The War on Coal retarded economic growth in West Virginia, a state that contributes so much to our nation.

Turns out coal is not filthy, but vital.


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  1. Replies
    1. Or, if you prefer, God's Waiting Room...

    2. Now wait a minute....St. Petersburg FL will fight you for that title.

  2. There is a rare earth elements mine not far from Las Vegas, just over the California border. When the mine is open, China drastically cuts its prices on rare earths so that the California mine is not economically viable. When the mine closes, China raises prices through the roof because they're then a monopoly. The Bush/free trade wing of the Republican Party applauds the ostensibly free market in action (where only one market participant is genuinely functioning as a free market), allowing predatory pricing that benefits only our main economic rival.

    1. Ought to mine to stockpile, then day-trade the Chi-Comms till their heads spin.

  3. The US has rare-earth element deposits but China undercuts on price. If China tries to take advantage of their monopoly by raising prices, the US can resume production.

  4. Skimmed article before I read it and saw "war on coal retarded". Retarded. Pretty well sums up the Obama admin.

  5. A beautiful state. Good things happen to good people.

  6. Just goes to prove that the Good Lord's answer to prayer is sometimes "Yes", sometimes "No", and sometimes "Wait".

  7. Didn't China just have an announcement of a multi-billion investment in West Virginia?

  8. When you mention, "West Virginia's divorce from the slave state Virginia....", don't forget to include the fact that WV was admitted to the Union as a slave state 7 months after the Emancipation Proclamation, while slaves in VA were de jure free.

  9. How about REEs in coal ash? Anyone looking at that?

  10. I don't know why we not concentrate on main goal. The welth of population and grouth. Some people loose the direction. See what China is doing regarding the World Bank
    Bulgarian-Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry