A goal of the USGS Earth Mapping Resources Initiative (Earth MRI) program, which partners the USGS with State Geological Surveys, Federal agencies, and the private sector, is to collect new geological, geophysical, geochemical, and topographic (lidar) data in key areas of the U.S., with the purpose of stimulating domestic mineral exploration and production of critical minerals. As a first step, the Earth MRI program identified regional geographic areas within the United States that may have potential to host deposits containing critical minerals. These are the focus areas described in Dicken and others (2022) (https://doi.org/10.5066/P9DIZ9N8). As a further step to meet Earth MRI priorities, mineral deposit information was gleaned from the USGS Mineral Resource Data System (MRDS), the Alaska Resource Data File (ARDF) and USMIN databases, as well as from industry reports and the literature, resulting in a database of 681 individual mineral deposits documented to contain critical minerals. In the database, deposits are classified within their respective focus areas by mineral systems, deposit types, and identified critical minerals. Production and/or resource/reserve numbers confirming the presence of critical minerals are included to further characterize the size, status, and potential of each entry. Deposits are also given a ranked value (1 to 6) determined from their critical mineral status as past, current or future producers, and the presence or absence of known reserves or resources. Out of 681 deposits, 244 of the entries are not classified as past or current producers, but have recognized, documented resources. This subset is of particular interest as it represents possible untapped critical mineral potential. References are provided to support production and resource figures. This mineral deposit database is designed to be used in conjunction with the focus area GIS and supplemental table (Dicken and others, 2022) for further spatial recognition of the distribution of critical mineral across the United States.
|Title||Critical mineral deposits of the United States|
|Authors||Jane M Hammarstrom, Laurel G Woodruff, Connie L. Dicken|
|Product Type||Data Release|
|Record Source||USGS Digital Object Identifier Catalog|
|USGS Organization||Geology, Energy & Minerals Science Center|