American Resources Policy Network
Promoting the development of American mineral resources.
  • Unlikely allies? China and India ink copper development deals

    In 2011, we saw a lot of countries enter into cooperative agreements to develop critical minerals.  This trend will likely continue this year, as nations that do not possess or develop some of the most sough-after metals and minerals are looking to secure future access and alleviate or stave off supply shortages. The last few days of 2011, however, have brought about some deals that are particularly interesting from an American Resources perspective.

    According to an AFP news story, in a move that is expected to increase production at India’s only copper mining company four-fold by 2017, three Chinese firms have signed mine development contracts with Kolkata-based Hindustan Copper.

    The move turns global competitors – with India probably being the most resource-hungry nation aside from China, and both nations eying each other suspiciously as they look to secure access to the world’s mineral riches, Africa being a case in point – into partners.

    It’s not just politics that makes strange bedfellows.  As the global race for resources continues to heat up, the geology of the world’s natural resources will likely bring more interesting and perhaps unexpected partnerships.  We look forward to keeping up with these and other developments on this blog, as well as on Facebook and Twitter throughout 2012.  Happy New Year!

  • Will the U.S. Congress take on resource development regulatory reform?

    Those of us who follow how public policy impacts private-sector efforts to develop domestic mineral resources need to tune in to the current Capitol Hill debate on jobs and economic growth.

    Senator Dean Heller (R-NV) recently introduced the Public Lands Job Creation Act, a bill that he says “will streamline the permitting process for energy development, including mineral and renewable energy development, while also preserving the time necessary for environmental analysis.” Reports also indicate that Heller intends to attach his legislation to a larger jobs package that could be voted on as early as today.

    At the heart of Heller’s language is a directive to speed up the mining permitting process in America. That legislative trigger would set a firm 45-day turnaround period for the U.S. Department of Interior (DoI) to complete its review process of any and all notices sent from state Bureau of Land Management offices.

    If enacted, this timely turnaround would certainly help American companies bring new mines into production, which is critical to our nation’s resource development.  According to the authoritative Behr Dolbeare annual report on mining countries, the U.S. ranks dead last in terms of the time to take to permit a new mine:  7 to 10 years on average.

    It is worth noting that this bill does not seek to shortcut environmental review or safety concerns connected to mining.  From what we can tell, it simply seeks to keep the review process moving forward in a timely manner – or in the United States’ case, moving forward at all.

    Whether or not Congress will perceive this sort of reform as key to job creation and economic growth is anything but clear; however, what is beyond dispute is that the U.S. must find ways to increase its responsible domestic resource development. We must decrease the needless dependency on foreign metals and minerals critical to our economy and national security.

  • The “Neverending Story” of red tape, roadblocks for mining in Arizona

    Authorities in Pima County, Ariz., have denied an air quality permit application submitted by Rosemont Copper as part of its efforts to open a new mine southeast of Tucson. Claiming the company failed to provide proper documentation, the county’s Air Quality Control district delivered the denial on Thursday, September 29. Rosemont Copper submitted its proposal for [...]
  • Manganese extraction from ore could be “game changer” to fulfill domestic needs

    In an interview with the “Gold Report,” J. Peter Zhang of JF Zhang Associates elaborates on the strategic necessity for the U.S. to develop a domestic supply of manganese, a vital component of steel production, and lithium-ion manganese batteries used in electric cars. Not home to high-grade manganese deposits, the U.S. has always relied on [...]
  • The Geography and Geopolitics of Copper Mining

    As we’re kicking off week two of “Copper Month” at American Resources, here’s a look at the geography at global copper mining, and the geopolitical challenges that arise from it.  According to the USGS Mineral Commodity Summaries, most of the world’s copper is mined in Chile, Peru, and China. The U.S. ranks fourth, but domestic [...]
  • The Economist takes “Dr. Copper’s” temperature

    As if they had known that October is Copper Month here on AmericanResources.org, the current issue of the Economist features a story on what the publication calls “Red Bull – the world’s most informative metal.” Leading off with an anecdote on the increase in copper theft (an issue we have previously discussed) serving as an [...]
  • Fraser Institute Releases 2011 Economic Freedom of the World Report

    Today, the Fraser Institute — which is not only Canada’s leading free-market think tank, but also employs two of American Resources’ distinguished subject- matter experts, Fred McMahon, and Jean-Francois Minardi — released the 2011 iteration of their annual Economic Freedom of the World report, available at www.freetheworld.com. The study looks at how the interplay of [...]
  • Strategic Metals Flashback – or Flash Forward?

    Our Director of Research, Sandra Wirtz, unearthed this piece from the Time Magazine online archives  – “Strategic Metal: #1,” dateline October 13, 1941 – just weeks before Pearl Harbor.  It inspired me to do a little research on my own, with an eye toward our present-day approach to strategic metals. With war raging in Europe, [...]
  • The More You Dig Campaign – Educating the public about the importance of mining for everyday life

    American Resources has partnered with the Northwest Mining Association and their The More You Dig campaign. Here’s a guest post from their Communications consultant, Izzy LaBranch, introducing the campaign: The More You Dig campaign, a project of the Northwest Mining Association, strives to change the public’s perception of mining by educating a younger audience about how mining [...]
  • Volunteer Directors to oversee American Resources Policy Network

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — The American Resources Policy Network has announced two new volunteer directors who will advise American Resources Principal Daniel McGroarty on the direction of the organization: Anne Darconte, Former Director of Outreach at the National Petrochemical & Refiners Association (NPRA), and Captain Nelson P. Jackson, U.S. Navy (Ret.), President and principal owner of [...]