Sen. Murkowski Files Critical Minerals Amendment to Currency Bill
Increasing Critical Minerals Production will Bring Jobs, National Security to America
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sens. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, and Dean Heller, R-Nevada, today filed an amendment promoting the domestic production of critical minerals to the Currency Exchange Rate Oversight Reform bill currently being debated on the Senate floor. The amendment (S. Amdt. 673) would help create jobs by addressing the domestic critical minerals supply chain in a comprehensive way.
Majority Leader Reid, D-Nevada, has moved to prevent votes on all amendments, but Murkowski hopes that he will change course and allow for consideration of this important amendment.
“If we want to compete with China we must restore our ability to produce a wide variety of raw materials,” Murkowski said. “They have near-monopoly control over rare earth elements that could just as easily be produced here at home if our critical mineral policies were brought into the 21st century.”
The amendment seeks to revitalize the United States’ critical minerals supply chain and reduce the nation’s growing dependence on foreign suppliers by providing a comprehensive set of policies to address each economic sector – from mining and processing to manufacturing and recycling – that relies on minerals that the U.S. Geological Survey determines to be critical to the economy.
“Critical minerals are the building blocks of our economy. We rely on them for everything from the smallest computer chips to the tallest skyscrapers, and yet the United States somehow lacks clear policies to ensure an affordable and abundant domestic supply,” Murkowski said. “This amendment will help generate more opportunities for domestic jobs, technological innovation, increased national security and greater competitiveness.”
Murkowski introduced similar legislation, the Critical Minerals Policy Act (S. 1113), earlier this year. The bill, which has 19 bipartisan cosponsors, received a legislative hearing in the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Energy Subcommittee in June. No further action has been taken on the bill.
Posted: October 4, 2011