Mineral Mining and Mineral Processing

Goals

To identify recent industry trends in mineral mining and mineral processing particularly around:
1. Critical mineral resiliency in the U.S.
2. U.S. mine permitting obstacles.
3. U.S. domestic mineral processing challenges.

Early Findings

Critical Minerals Resiliency

  • Various leaders have expressed concerns about the U.S. reliance on imports of critical minerals.
  • There is the potential for disrupting supply chains which rely on critical minerals for various uses such as electronics and defense applications.
  • A list of 35 minerals considered critical to the U.S. security and economy was published in 2019.
  • It consists of all the rare earth elements along with many non-ferrous metals.
  • The U.S. is 100% reliant on importing 14 minerals among the critical minerals list (except from the small amount that is recycled).
  • These minerals are difficult to substitute.
  • Additionally, the country is over 75% reliant on other 10 critical minerals.
  • The existing objective of U.S. mineral policy is to ensure a stable, adequate, and reliable supply of materials for national safety, economic productivity, and industrial well-being.
  • The mineral policy pushes for the development of a domestic supply of critical minerals and emphasizes that the private sector processes and produces these minerals.
  • According to the Department of Commerce, the U.S. is heavily dependent on imports of critical minerals.
  • Congress and other decision-making bodies have many administrative and legislative options to consider when addressing the U.S. vulnerabilities in relation to critical minerals.
  • The economic success and national security of the U.S. is highly dependent on the guaranteed supply of critical minerals and their supply chains' resiliency.

Proposed next steps:

You need to be the project owner to select a next step.
As the initial research touched on general information about critical minerals and their resiliency, we are suggesting further research that identifies, One: 3-5 recent trends (as requested) surrounding critical mineral resiliency in the U.S (especially in the supply chain). For each trend, we will describe what it is, why it is a trend, and how it has been illustrated. Two: 3-5 recent trends (as requested) surrounding U.S. mine permitting obstacles. For each trend, we will describe what it is, why it is a trend, and how it has been illustrated. Three: 3-5 challenges facing domestic mineral processing in the U.S. For each challenge, we will extensively describe what it is and how it affects the mineral industry in the U.S. Please check this box if we should continue with this research.
We can also identify 2-3 recent strategies that have been developed to ensure secure and reliable supplies of critical minerals in the U.S. For each strategy, we will provide background information, why it was developed, how it aims to promote resilience of critical minerals, and the key involved stakeholders. Please check this box if we should continue with this research.