September 18, 2023
As an essential industry, miners deliver the raw materials necess...
A year ago, Newt Gingrich had a plan to colonize the moon; since then, two U.S. companies have announced plans to mine asteroids for profit. Fortunately, we don’t have to go that far to gain all of the same benefits.
The United States is facing increasing problems accessing the minerals needed to produce automobiles, computer chips, MRI machines, jet engines and wind turbines, not to mention lasers and missile guidance systems important to our national security.
A recent article suggests the moon is a close, reliable source of minerals, but there is no need to go elsewhere, be it another country or the moon—not with $6.2 trillion worth of key mineral resources here at home.
By streamlining a badly broken regulatory review process, we could control our own supply chain and boost U.S. manufacturing prospects, without the dangers or costs of space travel.
Currently, it can take up to five times longer to get approval to mine for minerals here than it does in other countries, driving investment, production and jobs away from America.
Despite having the good fortune of leading the world in the diversity of our domestic commodity mineral supplies, we rely more every year on mineral imports.
By requiring redundant reviews by agencies at all levels of government, we are prohibiting readily available domestic minerals to enter the supply chain for manufacturers and other economic sectors. Of course, it’s essential to ensure appropriate safety and environmental measures are in place for mining projects. But, it shouldn’t have to take up to 10 years for these projects to be reviewed, which is too often the case.
America needs a common sense mining policy that enables us to increase domestic production of critical minerals and helps grow the economy.