A new report from the USGS asks the question about the future of rare earth elements [REE]—will these high-tech industry elements continue in short supply?
Author Keith Long concludes that "REE will continue to find increasing use due to their unique properties. There is a realistic possibility around 2015-2016 of sufficient REE capacity to meet demand under conditions of healthy price competition. REE supplies will be tight and prices high for a few years. There is significant downside risk that newly developed mines will not perform as planned.
You can view a video presentation of this report that the author made on May 26, 2011 at the USGS Evening Public Lecture Series in Menlo Park, Calif. http://online.wr.usgs.gov/calendar/2011.html). The report was produced at the USGS Western Mineral and Environmental Resources Science Center, Tucson Office at the University of Arizona.