American innovation impacted by mineral import reliance
April 19, 2012
Forbes.com published an op-ed yesterday by Gary Shapiro, presiden...
Many people are surprised to learn that minerals are the foundation of nearly all of the emerging technologies that are shaping America’s future.
For instance, did you know that copper is a critical component in wind turbines and the wiring of solar panels? Or that manganese is part of the steel alloy and batteries in hybrid cars? Or that platinum—used in more than 20 percent of all manufactured goods—is found in personal computers, flat-screen TVs and lifesaving medical devices?
For the sake of these important technologies and continuing U.S. technological advancement, stable access to domestic minerals is imperative. Depending on foreign sources for minerals leaves the United States vulnerable to shortages and export bans, like the one recently imposed by Indonesia. This could actually create national security concerns instead of solving them.
Minerals are not only important to the American way of life, but are also integral to the technologies that make American companies world leaders in innovation. It’s time for leadership to support meaningful permitting improvements to keep America at the forefront of innovation.