While mining for iron ore, a Swedish company came across the largest deposit of rare earth elements ever found in Europe. It could offer a huge boost to the continent’s green sector in the future.
When Swedish iron ore miners from LKAB went to work this week, they might have thought they had just another series of ordinary days ahead.
But they would soon find this was not the case. It was announced on Thursday that the company had discovered Europe’s largest deposit of rare earth elements located right next to one of its key sites of interest.
It was an unexpected finding during the iron ore mining project in Arctic Sweden, which uncovered a store of more than 1 million tons of rare earth oxides such as praseodymium or neodymium oxides.
This is especially exciting news, as these materials are used to make wind turbines and essential magnets for electric cars. Rare earth oxides also make up key components of electronic devices, microphones, and audio speakers.
As nations continue to expand green projects locally and across continents, these newly discovered deposits could offer a boost in the transition to clean energy for all of Europe.