Construction of $31M rare earth processing facility to start in Saskatoon this fall
Work on a facility designed to kick-start Saskatchewan’s rare earth element industry is moving ahead this fall.
Premier Scott Moe, among other officials, announced $31 million for construction of the new rare earth processing site in Saskatoon Aug. 27.
“[It] will be a catalyst to stimulate the resource sector in Saskatchewan and across Canada, providing the early-stage supply chain needed to generate cash-flow, investment and industrial growth of the sector,” Moe said in a release. “It will also help ensure the competitiveness of Saskatchewan as we focus on our economic recovery and grow our province over the next decade.”
Run by the Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC), the site will initially be capable of breaking down and extracting rare earth elements from the minerals bastnaesite and monazite. The crown corporation said the facility will add the ability to process uranium raffinate concentrate from the province’s mining industry at a later date.
The province anticipates the new processing plant to boost both Saskatchewan’s mining industry and help establish a wider rare earth supply chain.
The project is expected to create about 50 jobs during construction.
With construction starting this fall, the new facility is scheduled to open in 2022.