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Uranium: From “Benign Neglect” to a Smart Strategy?

In a recent piece for the Washington Times, ARPN panel of expert member and author of “Groundbreaking!: America’s New Quest for Mineral Independence,” Ned Mamula and columnist and consultant for FreedomWorks Stephen Moore zero in on Uranium.

Embedding the discussion in the context of American mining and production of critical minerals in recent decades being “a self-inflicted wound that could imperil our economy and national security,” they point to the fact that while the United States is home to vast domestic Uranium resources and reserves, “more than 90 percent of U.S. uranium requirements are now imported.” More than 40 percent of the total of these imports, come from a “potentially adversarial trading bloc,” Russia, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.

“This is not a friendly free-market group that America can depend on, especially in an emergency,” they lament. 

Globally, the percentage of uranium production “coming from state-controlled companies not located in Western market-based economies,” is on the rise.

Meanwhile, domestic issues have contributed to a drastic decrease in U.S. uranium production prompting U.S. Congressmen Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.), Rob Bishop (R -Utah), and Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), spoke of a “dying” industry in an op-ed for Fox News earlier this year.  

Acknowledging the national security implications of the issue, earlier this summer, President Trump announced the formation of a “U.S. Nuclear Fuel Working Group” to conduct a “fuller analysis of national security considerations with respect to the entire nuclear fuel supply chain.” The findings of the working group are due soon, and it will be interesting to see what the recommendations to alleviate “America’s Uranium crisis” are going to be. 

Moore and Mamula argue that — as non-supporters of trade protectionism they are unsure what the best solution to address the issue of imports coming from “nations that are not allies,” but one thing is certain, they argue:

“The strategy of benign neglect is not working and must be replaced with a smart strategy that ensures reliable and affordable uranium for years to come.”


To read the full piece, click here.

For more context, see Ned Mamula’s series for Capital Research Center on “Uranium, an underappreciated energy source.”