Firm Invests $800M to Open Rare Earth Elements Site in US

Once operational, the separation and extraction plant in Louisiana will have a capacity of more than 1 million tn.

John S. Forrester, former Managing Editor

March 9, 2021

2 Min Read
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Image courtesy of New Day Aluminum

A joint venture between DADA Holdings and green technology firm Enervoxa, ElementUS, is committing $800 million to open a rare earth elements separation and extraction plant near the Noranda Alumina refinery in Gramercy, LA, according to a recent release issued by Louisiana Economic Development (LED).

Owned by DADA Holdings company New Day Aluminum, the Noranda Alumina facility has a 35 million dry tn reserve of residual bauxite, a mineral contains 10 different rare earth elements.

“Rare earth elements are in short supply and are vital to national defense, critical technologies, and domestic industry in general,” said DADA Holdings chief executive officer and chairman David D’Addario in a statement. “We, alongside Enervoxa, have the opportunity to extract and commercialize valuable rare earths and other minerals while at the same time further reducing the environmental footprint at our alumina refining business and the US dependence on China for these limited and technologically strategic minerals.”

With the opening of the new site, about 200 jobs will be created with an average annual salary of $85,000 plus benefits.

“We are excited to be partnering with DADA Holdings and bringing our green technology to Louisiana and the Noranda Alumina site,” Vandit Verma, the CEO of Enervoxa, said in the release. “We have a proud history of developing and implementing green technology projects, and are confident that the partnership of ElementUS, Noranda Alumina, and the great state of Louisiana will be a long and mutually beneficial one.”

Using Enervoxa’s proprietary residual bauxite processing technology, the new ElementUS plant will have an annual capacity of more than 1 million tn.

The joint venture will make a final investment decision within the next year. If the project moves forward, the State of Louisiana will provide a $6 million performance-based grant, as well as its LEDFastStart workforce solutions. Construction of the site is expected to last two years.

About the Author(s)

John S. Forrester

former Managing Editor, Powder & Bulk Solids

John S. Forrester is the former managing editor of Powder & Bulk Solids.

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