April 4, 2012 (Source: IBTimes) — The first phase of construction works on the Lynas Advanced Materials Plant (LAMP) in Malaysia is nearly completed, with just the temporary operating license (TOL) left as the final fuel to totally ignite the rare earths plant into full operation.
In a media briefing in Kuantan on Tuesday, Australian miner Lynas Corp. said that with the rare earths plant’s construction status, it is ready to go online in three weeks’ time.
The only hindrance remaining is the absence of the TOL.
“The licence has been approved but we have yet to receive it. But Lynas has already fulfilled all the conditions stipulated for the licence to be issued and we are just waiting,” Datuk Mashal Ahmad, Lynas Malaysia Sdn Bhd managing director, said.
“We hope it can be issued very soon because we need to start operations in three weeks’ time and any more delays could result in financial losses for suppliers, product shortages for customers and impact future investors,” he added.
At the same time, Eric Noyrez, president and chief operating officer of Lynas Corp., who was also present in the media briefing, expressed they hoped to meet the members of the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) to clear the misleading information being spread about the LAMP rare earths facility.
“We have no intention to dump the waste (from LAMP) as we see money in them and have developed the technology to turn them into saleable items. All these have been done at both laboratory and pilot scales, using between 100 and 200 tonnes of the raw material,” Noyrez said.
Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak proposed in March the creation of the PSC to help raise awareness concerning the rare earths project, its’ supposed radiation effects as well as contributions to the country’s economic growth. It does not have any power to decide on approvals and plant operations.
Noyrez pointed out that the residues to be incurred from the LAMP will be converted into fertilisers, plaster boards, other hardcore base for road construction and other potentially economically viable products. The issue of creating a permanent disposal facility site, therefore, will become useless as there would be essentially nothing left of the ill residue, Noyrez noted.
“We are looking forward to be called up to give our explanations. The faster, the better,” Mashal said.