A worker is seen with concentrate ready for shipping at the Cheetah Resources’ Nechalacho Project near Yellowknife in August, 2021.

An important new mine has opened in the Northwest Territories. The Nechalacho Project is Canada’s first rare earth mine.

What are rare earth elements?

Rare earth elements are a group of 17 minerals. You’ll find these soft silvery-white metals in everyday technology. They’re used in cellphones, computers, cars, and screens.

Rare earths are a key ingredient of computer chips, magnets, and batteries. They make wind turbines turn and electric cars run. They’re also needed to generate, store, and distribute green energy.