REM International is a mineral exploration and production company with a commitment to discover, develop and produce from Rare Earth Mineral sites throughout the Pacific Ocean. REM International has a focus on innovative, state of the art technology in its exploration, analysis and mining of mineral sites, utilizing the latest advances in undersea robotics.
REM International has mining interests in both the Okinawa trough which lies to the northwest of Okinawa Island and off of the Izu Islands south of Tokyo bay. REM International geologists were also recently a part of an exploration of over 78 sites across the Pacific Ocean which concluded that more than 100 billion tons of rare earth minerals reside in the soft mud of the Pacific floor.
Japan consumes approximately 30,000 tons of rare earth metals each year and the Japanese Natural Resources and Energy Agency has, over the last few years, placed a focus on increasing Japan’s production of rare earth metals, offering development grants and exploration concessions in both the Okinawa Trough and around the Izu Islands. Both areas are highly active volcanic regions with rare earth producing hydrothermal vent systems.
The Okinawa Trough is a volcanically active, rifting basin in the East China Sea where the Philippine Sea Plate is sub-ducting beneath the Eurasian Plate. The trough has a large plateau at 1km depth and has a maximum depth of 2.7km. The trough contains numerous hydrothermal vent fields which are a rich resource of rare earth minerals.
The Izu Islands are a series of volcanic islands stretching south from Tokyo Bay into the Philippine Sea. There are more than a dozen islands, nine of which are inhabited with a total population of around 25,000 people. The area is an active volcanic region.
An exploratory survey carried out by a scientific research group, of which REM International scientists were a part of, concluded that over 100 billion tons of rare earth minerals resides in the mud of the Pacific Ocean. Although at depths of up to 6 kilometers, the latest in deepwater robotics technology, pioneered by REM International, means that the minerals can be extracted at relatively low costs and with minimal damage to the environment.