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American Resources Policy Network
Promoting the development of American mineral resources.
  • Green Energy Revolution Puts Copper in the Driver’s Seat

    At ARPN, we have long touted Copper’s versatility – its traditional uses, new applications and Gateway Metal status – but for those who still struggle to see more in Copper than your old school industrial metal, some visual help has arrived in the form of yet another impressive infographic from Visual Capitalist.

    The comprehensive infographic zeroes in on Copper applications in renewable energy systems and visualizes how the metal is driving the green energy revolution:

    The infographic also provides a snapshot into the looming Copper supply crunch, which, as some observers have argued, may come sooner than expected, in part because “Copper projects are notoriously large-scale in size, and the pipeline of new projects is the lowest in a century:”

    While this is a daunting proposition, there is reason to hope that going forward, the United States will be in a better position to confront looming supply shortages head-on.

    The Department of Interior may have stopped short of including Copper in its list of 35 minerals deemed critical from a national security perspective. However, the growing awareness of mineral resource security and supply issues can be a catalyst for meaningful policy reforms (such as the Amodei amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act) aimed at creating a framework to safely and efficiently harness our nation’s own vast mineral resource potential.

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  • Stakeholders and Experts Weigh in on DOI’s Finalized Critical Minerals List 

    Last week, the Department of the Interior released its finalized Critical Mineral list. In spite of calls to include various additional metals and minerals (see ARPN principal Daniel McGroarty’s public comments on the issue here) DOI decided to stick with its pool of 35 minerals deemed critical from a national security perspective.

    “With the list completed, the executive order now gives Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross 180 days to submit a strategy to reduce that reliance. The report will explore various options: increased trade with allies, recycling and reprocessing technology, and potential alternative materials to replace critical minerals,” writes Greenwire reporter Dylan Brown, who gathered early stakeholder and expert feedback for a piece published on Friday (subscription).

    Brown says that Commerce Secretary Wilbur’s report will, among other issues, zero in on what he calls the “No. 1 policy debate between the mining industry and environmentalists, and their Republican and Democratic allies in Congress” – the debate over how to reform the United States’ permitting framework for mining projects.

    Brown quotes National Mining Association spokeswoman Caitlin Musseman, who said:

    “More than a complex listing process, we need a simplified and efficient permitting system that unlocks the value of all our domestic mineral resources,” and argues that the list does not go far enough because of DOI’s “narrow view of criticality.”

    The piece also quotes ARPN’s Dan McGroarty, who, citing the example of Copper, underscored the importance and interrelationship of Gateway Metals and their Co-Products:

    “American Resources Policy Network President Daniel McGroarty pointed to copper, a ‘gateway’ to five minerals on the critical list.

    ‘The U.S. has a 600,000-metric-ton copper gap each year — the gap between what we consume and what we produce,’ he said. ‘The critical minerals list is a great starting point. The question now is how the U.S. government can match policy to the priority of overcoming our critical minerals deficit.”

    In the coming months, policymakers have the opportunity to shape mineral resource policy for the better – and to create a framework conducive to safely and efficiently harnessing our mineral resource potential to ensure our national security and competitiveness going forward.

    Here’s hoping they seize the momentum the recent increased focus on ‘critical minerals’ has generated.

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  • ARPN’s Daniel McGroarty Comments on DOI’s Release of Final Critical Minerals List

    The Department of the Interior released its final list of Critical Minerals today. The following is ARPN principal Daniel McGroarty’s statement on the list: “DOI issued its final list of Critical Minerals, unchanged at 35.  What we see is the degree of US dependency – the US is 100% import-dependent for 14 of the 35 [...]
  • USGS Scholars Provide Insights into Resource Interdependency and Conflict Potential in New Study

    The advances in materials science have been fundamentally transforming the way we look at metals and minerals – both from a usage, as well as a supply and demand perspective.  With that, the nature of potential resource conflict has also changed. As USGS National Minerals Information Center scholars Andrew L. Gulleya, Nedal T. Nassar,  and [...]
  • Coalition of Congressional Members and Stakeholders Call on EPA to Reverse Pre-emptive Veto and Restore Due Process to U.S. Mine Permitting  

    Earlier this month, the Congressional Western Caucus led a coalition of Members of Congress and Stakeholders to call on EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt to reverse a pre-emptive veto of the Pebble Mine project in Alaska. The veto stopped the project before it had formally applied to begin the permitting process — a unilateral expansion of [...]
  • Copper Gap Looms as Demand for EV Tech Continues to Surge

    While just a few short years ago, Rare Earth Element coverage dominated non-fuel mineral resource news cycles, it is the metals and minerals that fuel electric vehicle and battery technology that are making headlines these days. Here, the spotlight has been on Cobalt, Lithium, and, to a lesser extent, Nickel and associated supply and demand [...]
  • Congressional Western Caucus Members Call for Expansion of Critical Minerals List

    Earlier this month, members of the Congressional Western Caucus sent a letter to Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke, Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, and Acting Chair of the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) Mary Neumayr calling for the inclusion of additional metals and minerals into the draft critical minerals list released by Secretary Zinke [...]
  • Road to Regulatory Reform – NMA-Commissioned Poll Shows Voters in Favor of Domestic Mining Permitting Reforms

    Advances in materials science are altering and expanding the ways in which we use metals and minerals at neck-breaking speeds, and are drastically changing the supply and demand picture.  The United States was significantly less dependent on foreign supplies of metals and minerals in the 1970s — but today, we find ourselves import-reliant for scores [...]
  • “Critical Minerals Alaska” – North of 60 Mining News Publishes Series on Alaska’s Resource Potential

    Against the backdrop of an increased focus on critical minerals at the federal level, North of 60 Mining News — an Alaska-based trade publication covering mineral resource issues for Alaska, northern British Columbia, Yukon, Northwest Territories and Nunavut — has started a new series of articles ARPN followers may wish to bookmark. As Lasley pointed [...]
  • Road to Regulatory Reform – ARPN Launches New Effort to Promote Regulatory Reform in the Non-Fuel Mineral Resource Sector

    Since its inception, ARPN has advocated for more robust domestic resource development. The U.S. mine permitting process has long inhibited domestic development, and has exacerbated U.S. dependence on foreign metals and mineral supplies.  As the pace of technological change accelerates, driven by advances in materials science, these ever-deepening resource dependencies are weakening the U.S. economy [...]

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