Rare Earth Elements

December 15, 2010 • 2:30 – 5:00 pm EST

Geology, Geography and Geopolitics

Rare earth elements have recently become an issue in the media and on the national agenda, despite years of relative obscurity.  This group of 17 elements is critical to the production of automotive components, communications technologies, clean energy sources, weapons systems, traditional fuel refineries, and countless other technologies.  This panel is intended to address questions of key policy importance:  What do the recent market developments mean for the rare earths industry? How should the United States respond to the changing market trends? What are the implications for the cleantech manufacturing sector?

Welcome and Introduction
David Pumphrey, Deputy Director and Senior Fellow, CSIS Energy and National Security Program

Keynote Presentation
David Sandalow, Assistant Secretary for Policy and International Affairs, U.S. Department of Energy

The Basics of Rare Earth Elements: Chemistry, Geography, and Potential for Alternatives
Speaker to be announced, U.S. Geological Survey

Rare Earth Elements in the Global Economy: Market Composition, International Trade, and Applications
Clint Cox, The Anchor House

Global Rare Earths Production: History and Outlook
Jim Hedrick, Hedrick Consultants

Rare Earth Elements and Cleantech
Steve Duclos, Chief Scientist for Materials Sustainability, General Electric Global Research

The panel will be followed by commentaries on the international perspectives by Charles Freeman, Freeman Chair, CSIS and Michihiro Kishimoto, Chief Representative, Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation (JOGMEC)'s Washington Office.

The program will conclude with a question and answer session.

The full U.S. Department of Energy report "Critical Materials Strategy" released at the event can be accessed on the DOE website at www.energy.gov/news/documents/criticalmaterialsstrategy.pdf. In addition there is a summary, available at http://www.energy.gov/news/documents/Critical_Materials_Summary.pdf.

For further reading, the U.S. Geological Survey report summarizing the significant rare earth elements deposits can be found at http://pubs.usgs.gov/sir/2010/5220/.

David Pumphrey
Senior Associate (Non-resident), Energy Security and Climate Change Program
Jane Nakano
Senior Fellow, Energy Security and Climate Change Program