US plans to boost production of 35 critical minerals

20 February 2018 (Last Updated February 21st, 2018 06:57)

The US Government has revealed plans to boost production of 35 important minerals, including uranium, cobalt, and lithium to reduce the nationwide dependence on overseas suppliers. 

The US Government has revealed plans to boost production of 35 important minerals, including uranium, cobalt, and lithium to reduce the nationwide dependence on overseas suppliers.

The US Department of Interior’s (DoI) draft list also contains aluminum and potash, materials that are considered important for basic manufacturing, batteries, and electronics industries.

A presidential order was issued in December and this is seen as the first step of the department to carry out the order.

Lithium and cobalt are essential components for the rechargeable batteries industry.

“Any shortage of these resources constitutes a strategic vulnerability for the security and prosperity of the United States.”

DoI’s assistant secretary for water and science Tim Petty said: “Any shortage of these resources constitutes a strategic vulnerability for the security and prosperity of the United States.”

The US administration intends to identify new sources by boosting exploration, enable producers to have better access to mapping and geological data as well as streamline leasing and approval process for new mines.

The department has sought public comment on the list until 19 March.

Increasing production of non-fuel and fossil fuel resources are part of the Trump administration’s America First policy to boost exports and cut down imports, reported Reuters.

Currently, the Commerce Department is looking at a petition filed by two domestic producers of uranium to curb imports from counties such as Russia.