By Dr. Jay Lehr~
No nation on Earth has been endowed with more valuable minerals than the United States. We led the world in mining output only 30 years ago. Due to environmental activist resistance and unreasonable EPA regulations our nation has fallen to seventh in mining productivity. Yet the National Mining Association estimates that we sit atop $6 trillion in mineral assets that could add $50 to $60 billion to our Gross Domestic Product (GDP) annually along with tremendous additional revenue to the nations tax base.
The US Geological Survey has determined that we are 100% dependent on imports for 37 important industrial minerals including all 17 rare earths, and more than 50% reliant for another 30 important minerals. The 100% group includes well known minerals such as graphite, manganese, strontium and fluorspar and the 50% group includes cobalt, lithium, tungsten, chromium and magnesium among others.
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