Rare earth elements consist of a group of seventeen chemical elements grouped together on the periodic table. Since 1950 demand for these elements has exploded as a key component of the technology the drives our modern society. From cell phones, TV and computer displays, and fuel cells to critical defense applications, these elements make possible contemporary life.
While not necessarily “rare” increasing demand on rare earths is putting pressure on supply. Most rare earths now come from China and, as the infographic below explains, the supply of rare earth elements in China is quickly dwindling. This increasing scarcity is becoming an obstacle to development of green and sustainable technology. In the coming years and decades the world faces the challenge of scaling up production of rare earth elements to meet demand. Find out more below:
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