“Geomega is in a strong position financially and is well positioned to reach production from the rare earths recycling facility. Similarly, the funds available have given us the ability to accelerate our research and development initiatives to evaluate our technology to extract and refine rare earths and other critical metals from a broader range of mining feeds, including mining and industrial waste streams (tailings). Most recently, our process has been successfully demonstrated at the magnet recycling pilot plant to produce hydrogen as a by-product that could be collected (see news) and therefore Geomega continues to evaluate opportunities and synergies in this important emerging clean energy fuel in Quebec and globally. We are confident that our rare earths recycling plant and the associated technologies will be critical in the foreseeable future to become less dependant on foreign entities for the supply of critical and strategic metals, to help develop the circular economy for many of these metals and to reduce mining and industrial waste.” commented Kiril Mugerman, President and CEO of Geomega.
“It was only a question of time before companies like Everwin have decided to bring the expertise they have developed over decades in the magnet industry in China to Canada. The favorable energy rates, a healthy labour market, direct access to the North American market, the growing electric vehicle sector and now a recycling facility with Geomega to process magnet scraps and swarf, make Canada an ideal location to develop a magnet facility. We are very excited to be working with Everwin as they look to start production in Canada. This type of operation will produce on average 25% magnet waste and swarf that will need to be recycled at our rare earths recycling facility in St-Bruno.” commented Kiril Mugerman, President and CEO of Geomega.
“Having a fully operational Pilot Plant has provided Geomega with the necessary validation to proceed to the next stages of engineering, finalize discussions with vendors and launch procurement. Additional development and details on these activities will follow. We fully expect 2021 to be a transformational year for Geomega shareholders with the upcoming construction of the demonstration plant and its start of production of rare earth oxide using recycled magnets, a first in the Western world. We believe that the accelerated demand growth for renewable energy and the electric vehicle sectors, coupled with industries and governments striving for zero waste and reductions in greenhouse gases, is going to result in an even larger demand for recycling rare earths from magnets and other sources. Geomega is looking forward to providing the required clean technology in the critical metal space to achieve a circular economy for rare earth magnets with its initial demonstration plant to be showcased in St-Bruno, Quebec.” commented Kiril Mugerman, President and CEO of Geomega.
“We are very pleased with the closing of this financing. The majority of the Offering was subscribed by new investors who are seeking both near-term cash flow opportunities and Environmental, Social and Governance (“ESG”) investments in the critical and strategic minerals (CSM) space. Geomega’s activities are also aligned with the Government of Quebec Plan for the Development of the Critical and Strategic Minerals with a budget of $90M that was just recently unveiled on October 29, 2020. This government-sponsored financial initiative is aimed at creating wealth while continuing the green energy transition, essential for the fight against climate change. The government’s vision is to make Quebec a leader in CSM production, transformation, reclamation and recycling. The circular economy concept, of which Geomega’s proprietary rare earth magnet recycling project is an integral part of, is at the core of this plan as stated by Benoit Charette, Minister of the Environment and the Fight Against Climate Change during the announcement.” commented Kiril Mugerman, President and CEO of Geomega. You can read more about the Plan for the Development of CSM in Quebec here.
“This comprehensive investment by our government is intended to encourage the development of a green economy. This is a major aspect of the Geomega project. Also, recycling rare earths elements is an avenue for the enhancement and development of critical and strategic minerals in Quebec. With technologies and the energy transition, demand is strong for these minerals.” Jonatan Julien, Minister of Energy and Natural Resources, Minister responsible for the Côte-Nord region.
“Geomega’s corporate goal is to develop innovative technologies for extraction and separation of rare earth elements and other critical metals essential for a sustainable future,” said Kiril Mugerman, President & CEO of Geomega. “The technologies in question will differ from the ISR technology that was developed for recycling of rare earths from permanent magnets. Nonetheless, irrespective of the metal or the source, we are adopting a consistent approach to reduce the environmental impact and to contribute to lowering greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions through recycling of the major reagents in the process and reducing net energy consumption.”
“We are very pleased with the results received and the improved process for rare earths recycling from permanent magnets.” said Kiril Mugerman, President & CEO of Geomega. “The pilot test runs will provide demonstration to Geomega of the modifications that were done over the last 7 months and will support the Corporation in performing the next phase of engineering work, which will then allow us to proceed with vendor selection and equipment ordering. Although we have encountered delays both in engineering and in general due to the COVID-19 pandemic, our project is advancing well. We are continuing discussions with potential suppliers and construction partners and will provide additional information when available. As North America appears to be establishing domestic permanent magnet production in North America, we believe the timing of our development of our demonstration plant at St-Bruno, Quebec is right and Geomega is looking forward to being part of the global circular economy for rare earths.” Added Mr. Mugerman.
“We are very excited to be working in collaboration with USA Rare Earth. We both share the same vision to bring rare earth magnet production back to North America while securing the critical rare earth elements using Geomega’s clean technology to process magnet waste.” said Kiril Mugerman, President & CEO of Geomega. “It is exciting to be part of USA Rare Earth mine-to-magnet strategy which we can participate in and support using our rare earth clean recycling technology. Establishing a partnership initiative such as this in North America will prevent any supply chain disruptions from China for these critical elements. Every rare earth magnet factory produces waste. By working together, Geomega and USA Rare Earth will ensure that the rare earths contained in this waste shall remain in North America and are then reused to make more rare earth magnets for the U.S. and Canadian markets that comply with the McCain National Defense Authorization Act. It will be a great opportunity to demonstrate to global magnet manufacturers that there are innovative solutions to obtain rare earths from trusted sources that don’t harm the environment and produce less greenhouse gases than the current outdated methods used in China. Geomega’s vision is for every magnet factory to use our technology in order to recycle their waste and not be dependant on foreign entities,” added Mr. Mugerman.
“The grant of this patent acknowledges that our unique process has been recognized and protected.” said Kiril Mugerman, President & CEO of Geomega. “The Montviel metallurgy research executed in 2014 and 2015 (See news releases from April 29, 2015 and May 20, 2015) led to these patents, and set the framework for how Geomega operates today committed to lowering the environmental footprint of processes to extract and separate REE, reagent regeneration and minimizing the amount of effluents and solid waste that are generated. Geomega is in discussions with potential partners to use this expertise in metallurgical treatment of REE to help develop a western supply chain.”
“We recently began a collaboration with Jobmaster Magnets and it quickly became very clear that Matt can bring significant industry knowledge and expertise to the Corporation as we are moving towards production. His understanding of the magnet supply chain is critical, especially in the current global environment where industrial supply chains are being redefined. As North America is looking to bring rare earths downstream processing back home, Matt’s experience with magnetic product design for various industries from aerospace to automotive is important for Geomega to fit in that supply chain. Additionally, Matt’s experience in operation management, setting up the required ISO Quality management programs and internal audits will be vital in the starting up of the first rare earths recycling plant.” added M. Mugerman.
As indicated in the April 20, 2020 press release, the Corporation obtained the natural product number (“NPN”) and all the approvals from Health Canada in order to manufacture and distribute hand sanitizer using the WHO-recommended formulation. The modifications have now been completed and production has begun. The production is from the Corporation’s Pilot Plant and allows Geomega to produce up to 675 liters per week. Although, since there is a significant lack of supplies in the market, production capabilities will depend on availability of raw materials from local distributers. The Corporation will be securing additional supply of raw material and focus on distributing its hand sanitizer product to local retirement homes, hospitals, pharmacies and distributers in the province of Québec. The Corporation will be donating 20% of its hand-sanitizer production to local long-term care homes and other charities who are helping the most vulnerable in our society during this pandemic. The Corporation would like to thank local suppliers who were able to assist and support us during this quick transition.
“Geomega’s chemical processing team has proven once again its skill to utilize its expertise with evolving market conditions. I am proud of our team that shows flexibility, motivation and creativity, especially during a difficult situation like we see globally today. Geomega can assure its shareholders that these modifications to the pilot plant will in no way impede the progress of building the much larger demonstration plant located in nearby St. Bruno, Quebec. Geomega strives to become Canada’s first rare earth oxide producer, using recycled magnet waste, making Canada one of the few countries outside of Asia to be able to do so. Geomega has continued to advance even under recent difficult social distancing measures and is progressing successfully in the engineering work with Hatch. Upon engineering being completed, ordering the long lead items for the facility will be a priority. Geomega had recently secured project debt financing of $1.72M from the Quebec Government this February (see news release dated February 7, 2020) which has effectively fulfilled the required capital to complete construction of the Demonstration Plant. Geomega, in conjunction with the Quebec Government, has a very clear objective to establish Quebec as a hub for a clean technology and sustainable rare earths refining industry, self reliant and not dependant on other countries for key materials. In light of recent events and supply shortages, as highlighted by reported delays in medical ventilators construction due to lack of permanent magnets (see full article here), this has never been more critical. Geomega looks forward to further engagement with end users and Governments on rare earths recycling and establishing a sustainable supply chain based right here in Quebec, Canada.” Commented Kiril Mugerman, President & CEO of Geomega.
“We are very excited to work together with Jobmaster Magnets on setting an example and becoming a leader in magnet collection and recycling. Jobmaster Magnets is one of the largest and oldest Canadian magnet suppliers with over 35 years’ experience in the industry. They serve various industries including the automotive and manufacturing sectors, both major users of magnets. Jobmaster Magnets’ clients, in Canada and abroad, will be able to benefit from having their magnets recycled in a clean and sustainable way right here in Canada while preserving this critical resource from going to the land fills. As outlined in the U.S. Federal Government open funding opportunity for REE separation and processing project that Geomega is applying for, recycled feedstocks are being considered as a potential source. This first collaboration agreement is a step forward to establish a rare earth magnet recycling industry in North America to produce a consistent, reliable and sustainable supply of the required magnet focused rare earths (Nd, Pr, Dy, Tb) for future government and commercial needs.” commented Kiril Mugerman, President & CEO of Geomega.
“Japan will conduct the financing through a government-owned resource investment company: the Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corp., or Jogmec. Legislation will be revised to allow it to take stakes in rare-earths smelting projects. Processing facilities, which have a large environmental impact, are now primarily concentrated in China. And Beijing has employed its dominance in rare earths to exert pressure before. In 2010, it quietly cut exports to Japan amid a dust-up over a territorial issue. Jogmec will also take steps to ensure Japan’s stable access to cobalt, a mineral used in lithium-ion batteries, to counter Chinese enterprises securing rights in Congo. The resource company could spend up to around 20 billion yen ($182 million) in all on both efforts.”
CEO Kiril Mugerman says, “With the joint action plan on critical minerals collaboration that was signed between United States and Canada (last week), we are starting to see the first concrete steps by both countries in securing supply chains for the critical minerals needed for important manufacturing sectors, including communication technology, aerospace and defence, and clean technology.
“We envision that our demonstration plant in St-Bruno can become the center of Quebec’s rare earths hub that would bring these critical materials back to North America.”