North Valley Public Library (NVPL) will host “Rare Element Mining: What it Means for the Bitterroot” featuring Philip W. Ramsey, Ph.D. on Thursday, June 1 at 6:30 p.m. The program is at the NVPL Community Room, 208 Main Street, Stevensville and available via Zoom. The presentation is free and open to the public.
In early April, United States Critical Materials (USCM) stated that “Based on the indicators, Montana may be renamed from ‘Big Sky Country’ to ‘Big Rare Earth Country.’” Please join Philip W. Ramsey, Ph.D. to learn about and discuss what this may mean for the Bitterroot Valley.
This program aims to provide an objective, non-political overview of rare earth element mining, including its environmental impacts. Specific talking points include how hard rock mining impacts ecosystems, how rare earth element mines operate in China and the U.S., and the radioactive metal thorium and the mineral actinolite present in the Sheep Creek ores. A
discussion follows the presentation focusing on questions for USCM about their proposed mining operation.
Dr. Ramsey earned his Ph.D. working in the Clark Fork Superfund site, developing methods to quantify the damage caused by mines in the river’s headwaters. “As a scientist with many years of experience working in a contaminated ecosystem,” Dr. Ramsey explains, “I have firsthand
knowledge of the risks associated with mining activities.”
He invites anyone interested in learning more about rare earth element mining to attend and says “the talk will not be overly technical, no background in chemistry needed!” Participants will be encouraged to think critically about the challenges and opportunities of mining rare earth elements and to foster an informed and productive discussion about the impact of mining activities on local communities and the environment.
Register at northvalleylibrary.org under Calendar.
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