China’s Monopoly on Rare Earth Elements—and Why We Should Care (Foreign Policy Research Institute)

Related Thinks provides links to external commentary and blog posts related to the Arctic.

Published by Foreign Policy Research Institute
7 Oct 2020
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A U.S. rare earth mineral strategy should . . . consist of national stockpiles of certain rare earth elements, reestablishing rare earth mineral processing in the U.S. by implementing new incentives and removing disincentives, and [research and development] around new forms of clean rare earth mineral processing and substitutes. We will need your help.”  – Ellen Lord, Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment, Testimony to Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Readiness and Management Support, October 1, 2020.

One day before Ms. Lord’s testimony, President Donald Trump had signed an executive order “declaring a national emergency in the mining industry,” aimed at “incentivizing the domestic production of rare earth minerals critical for military technologies while reducing American dependence on China.” The sudden sense of urgency in a heretofore little discussed topic must have come as a surprise to many.

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