Critical Minerals Rock the Vote on House Floor
Washington, May 23, 2018
Today, Congressional Western Caucus Chairman Paul Gosar (AZ-04), Vice-Chairman for Policy and Appropriations Mark Amodei (NV-02), Chief Regulatory Reform Officer Andy Biggs (AZ-05), Western Caucus Members Doug LaMalfa (CA-01) and Tom Emmer (MN-06) and Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning released statements after Congressman Amodei's Amendment #122 to the NDAA which would facilitate streamlined permitting for critical and strategic minerals passed the Floor of the House of a Representatives on a bipartisan vote of 229-183.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressional Western Caucus Chairman Paul Gosar (AZ-04), Vice-Chairman for Policy and Appropriations Mark Amodei (NV-02), Chief Regulatory Reform Officer Andy Biggs (AZ-05), Western Caucus Members Doug LaMalfa (CA-01) and Tom Emmer (MN-06) and Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning released the following statements after Congressman Amodei's Amendment #122 to the NDAA which would facilitate streamlined permitting for critical and strategic minerals passed the Floor of the House of a Representatives on a bipartisan vote of 229-183:
Chairman Paul Gosar said "A non-classified defense study recently found that failure to have a reliable supply chain for at least 16 of the 35 critical minerals has already caused significant weapon system production delays for the Department of Defense. And a recent report published by the Department of the Interior and U.S. Geological Survey found the U.S. is 100 percent net import reliant on foreign countries, including China, for 20 different critical minerals. This irrational overreliance threatens our national security by imperiling our ability to make equipment and weapons integral to mission success. No other developed country hamstrings themselves the way we do with domestic mining permitting and project delays - let alone a military superpower. I applaud my colleagues for passing this amendment on a bipartisan basis and reiterate the mission-critical necessity that it become law."
Vice-Chairman for Policy and Appropriations Mark Amodei stated, “No amount of political misinformation will change the fact that in times of regional emergency or national disaster America must have the option to responsibly utilize its own resources to protect the national interest.”
Congressman Doug LaMalfa said, “In recent years, the U.S. has become dangerously dependent upon foreign countries to provide important metals and minerals that our military needs. We certainly shouldn’t be relying on China for precious materials that are critical to our national defense. Unfortunately, the current process can often take over a decade to approve a mining operation in the United States. I was glad to Cosponsor an amendment to the NDAA with Mr. Amodei that will streamline our development of critical minerals at home and create jobs for American workers along the way. Our national security interests should rest solely in our own hands, not China’s.”
Congressman Tom Emmer stated, “I am proud to support the National Strategic and Critical Minerals Protection Act which will bring us closer to fulfilling the United States’ strategic and critical minerals potential. These materials are instrumental to America’s national defense and economic competitiveness, as is ensuring we can mine them here at home. Across the country, states like Minnesota, which is home to the largest untapped copper-nickel deposit in the world, are ready to step up to end our nation’s near 100 percent reliance on foreign countries for strategic minerals.”
Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning said, “The development of rare earth metals is critical to the national security of the United States and being competitive in the 21st century economy. Rep. Amodei's amendment is a great step forward in meeting our nation's needs for rare earth metals, and we strongly urge passage.”
An essential component of America's national defense engine and competitive advantage over other nations is mineral production. As one of our nation’s largest consumers of metals and minerals, the U.S. Department of Defense uses as much as 750,000 ton of minerals each year. These metals and minerals are key ingredients for military technology as well as other strategic readiness components such as medical devices, energy infrastructure and roads.
In addition to our nation’s defense, mineral production is also critical for responding to natural disasters and to the health of America's economy and manufacturing sectors.
President Trump’s Executive Order 13806, Assessing and Strengthening the Manufacturing and Defense Industrial Base and Supply Chain Resiliency of the United States, noted that a healthy manufacturing and defense industrial base and resilient supply chains are essential to the economic strength and national security of the United States.
Under current practices, it takes on average seven to 10 years for an operation to be approved, and can take much longer in many cases. The United States can't afford to wait 10 years for crucial raw materials when reacting to a crisis, and it cannot afford to be dependent on adversaries like China and Russia for critical minerals at any time.
This amendment will allow the United States to more efficiently develop our Nation's strategic and critical minerals, including rare earth elements, by centralizing permitting review projects under a lead agency, streamlining permitting time-frames for critical and strategic minerals and preserving necessary environmental protections.
See the text of Rep. Amodei's amendment here.
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