Oklahoma U.S. Sen. James Lankford and two other senators want to do more to enhance the country’s ability to produce minerals used in critical technologies and at the same time thwart the supply chain control wielded by Communist China.
Lankford joined Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman Mark Warner (D-VA) and Vice Chairman Marco Rubio (R-FL) to lead a group of colleagues in a call for action to secure supply chains and reduce US reliance on the People’s Republic of China (PRC) for minerals used in critical technologies, through increased government support to US private sector companies investing and operating in critical mineral projects.
In their letter to Amos Hochstein, Senior Advisor to the President for Energy and Investment, the Senators highlighted the exploding demand of critical minerals and their growing importance to US national security, while pointing out the US is falling behind its adversaries in efforts to secure the global critical mineral supply chain.
The Senators wrote, “Demand for critical minerals is growing exponentially, yet the US substantially lags behind its adversaries in securing critical mineral supply chains. In fact, in many cases China controls nearly 100 percent of the end-to-end supply chain, and is actively seeking to maintain and increase its control of these resources around the globe.”
Outlining key areas where improvement is needed to expand domestic capabilities, the Senators requested that the Administration take a series of steps to ensure US support to domestic industry, to strengthen internal coordination across government agencies, and to formulate a strategy for US collaboration with our allies in order to combat China’s growing dominance in this space.
They continued, “Focusing the efforts of the US government, in coordination with our allies, upon standing up processing, refining, and metallurgical capacity must be a priority if we are going to succeed in reducing our reliance on China for critical minerals.”
Recently, Lankford joined Senator Dan Sullivan (R-AK) and 20 Senators to send a letter to Eric Beightel, the Executive Director of the Federal Permitting Improvement Steering Council (FPISC), demanding the council rescind its proposal to limit the type of mining projects eligible for the improved permitting process established under Title 41 of the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST-41).
The full letter is available HERE