VANCOUVER, May 21, 2013 /PRNewswire/ - Tasman Metals Ltd. ("Tasman" or the "Company") (TSXV:TSM; Frankfurt:T61; NYSE-MKT:TAS). Mr Mark Saxon, President & CEO, is pleased to announce that Tasman has been granted its Mining Lease for the Norra Karr heavy rare earth element (REE) project in Sweden. The Mining Lease gives the Company the full mineral rights for the Norra Karr project for an initial period of 25 years, which is then automatically renewed in 10 year increments if the mine is in operation. The lease was granted by the Swedish Mining Inspectorate (Bergsstaten) after extensive stakeholder consultation. As is standard practice for the grant of new mining leases, stakeholders have a five week window within which to appeal.
Extensive environmental and social impact data was collected by independent consultants and assessed by the Swedish Mining Inspectorate for the granting of the Mining Lease. Environmental baseline data was gathered over several years, recording flora and fauna, water quality in streams and lakes, the character of river, lake and soil sediments, and the biogeochemistry of local plants. Archaeology of the region was studied, as was waste-rock and tailings composition, leaching character, and potential locations for future tailings storage. Regular community meetings were held, and various local and regional government agencies were informed and consulted. No impediment to the Norra Karr project was identified during this extensive research.
"The grant of our Mining Lease for Norra Karr is a significant milestone for the Company, and we congratulate our staff and consultants whose efforts have brought us so quickly to this point" said Mark Saxon, Tasman's President and CEO. "The social impact studies that we completed highlighted the very positive regional impact that Tasman's sustained investment in Norra Karr can bring. As Norra Karr can supply much of the European demand for REE's for at least 40 years, we believe the supply security it shall provide will have a far reaching effect."
The Norra Karr project is one of the two NI 43-101 compliant REE resources within the European Union, both 100% owned by Tasman Metals Ltd. Norra Karr lies 15km NNE of the township of Gränna and 300km SW of the capital Stockholm in mixed forestry and farming land. The short time taken from discovery to ML application demonstrates the efficiency and advantage of operating in a jurisdiction with a strong and transparent Mining Act and a long term association with resource industries. The project is proximal to road, rail, power and operating ports, plus skilled personnel, minimizing the need for offsite infrastructure to be built by the Company.Norra Karr is one of the largest and most economically robust projects amongst its peers, due to the high contribution of the high value critical REE's (dysprosium (Dy), yttrium (Y), neodymium (Nd), terbium (Tb)). Substantial capital and operating cost benefits are provided by the existing infrastructure and the simple mineralogy that allows ambient temperature and pressure processing. Norra Karr's proximity and easy road access to European markets stands as a unique operating advantage for the project.