Most Americans think our nation’s foreign adversaries will target America's energy infrastructure in the future, according to a new TIPP Poll. Americans also believe that the United States should pursue a diverse energy portfolio to protect America's energy channels, and it should increase domestic capacity to produce rare earth and other minerals.
We agree that increasing access to mineral, oil, and gas development on American soil strengthens our economy by providing thousands of Americans with high-paying jobs and tightens national security by decreasing our reliance on foreign adversaries for these important natural resources. We believe commonsense policies to strengthen our national and energy security need to be enacted.
Saving America’s Mines Act
On the minerals front, the Saving America’s Mines Act will prohibit this Administration or any other from unilaterally halting the mining of critical minerals on federal lands currently open for mineral production.
Specifically, the legislation requires an Act of Congress to withdraw public lands from mining to prevent any Administration from eliminating jobs and endangering national security.
Northern Minnesota is blessed with an abundance of critical minerals. It has 95% of this country’s nickel, 88% of its cobalt, and more than one-third of its copper, along with rare earths, platinum, and many others in Minnesota’s Eighth Congressional district alone.
In the last days of his Presidency, then-President Obama, along with then-Vice President Biden, withdrew more than 234,000 acres from mining in northern Minnesota, hurting families and the local and regional economies. It also put our nation at a national security risk by forcing Americans to rely on adversarial nations for these critical minerals. The Saving America’s Mines Act would prevent any President from doing this again.
Mining America’s Minerals Strengthens Economy And National Security
America needs the copper, nickel, cobalt, platinum-group elements, and many other mineral commodities for infrastructure, modern energy technologies, and military defense—not to mention everyday applications like cell phones, refrigerators, and batteries.
Currently, China enjoys a virtual monopoly on minerals such as lithium, cobalt, and rare earths. The Biden Administration has proposed vast emissions reductions, but without massive investments in critical minerals, America cannot independently achieve the Administration’s renewable energy goals. We must end reliance on Chinese suppliers, and other adversaries as 95% of rare earths are either mined or processed in China.
Americans prefer this strategy. Nearly two-thirds (65%) of respondents to the TIPP Poll favor increasing domestic capacity to produce rare earth materials despite potential environmental outcomes.
Biden Executive Orders On Mining Compromise National Security, Violate Human Rights
Furthermore, recent bans imposed by the Biden Administration on American mining and decreased access to federal lands force us to compromise our national morals as we become more reliant on nations who exploit children.
The Democratic Republic of Congo is notorious for having slave labor and child miners in its cobalt production, sacrificing their safety and their education. Many of these mines are Chinese-owned. This is morally unacceptable.
Slave labor is used in other parts of the globe as well. In Xinjiang, the northwestern region of China and home to millions of Uyghur Muslims, enslaved miners are currently producing polysilicon, of which China holds 45% of the world’s supply. Polysilicon is an important component in solar panels extracted from mined quartz. An investigation found that the production of this mineral uses forced labor from the Uyghur Muslims in the Xinjiang region. The Biden Administration has recently acted to ban imports of polysilicon from Xinjiang, and we hope this signals a willingness to address other major human rights abuses in mineral development around the world. This Administration needs to go much further, though, and support domestic production, in order to minimize reliance on other nations.
Biden Energy Policies Are Creating Price Hikes, Inflation, and Harming Vulnerable Communities
The Colonial pipeline attack by Russian hackers was the first in a series of strikes against vulnerable American infrastructure. Other ransomware attacks have been hitting the headlines, and most Americans now believe such attacks will continue. In the TIPP Poll, two-thirds think future attacks are likely.
These sieges, coupled with the Biden Administration’s ill-conceived energy policies, have forced American businesses and families to pay the highest energy prices in over a decade. Gas prices have increased 45% since Biden took office with gas costing an average of $3.14 per gallon - nearly one dollar more than they were one year ago. Gas prices are expected to increase by 10-20 cents more through August.
Coupled with inflation and a volatile jobs market, new energy policies imposed by the current Administration will impact all Americans but particularly hurt low-income families and minority communities. Low-income families pay a greater share of their income on utilities, in some cases as much as 35%.
The majority of Americans would like to see the country achieve a diverse energy portfolio that will lead to self-sufficiency and strengthen its national security.
Right now, U.S. policy under the Biden Administration prioritizes foreign mineral development, fails to support vulnerable infrastructure, and punishes low- and middle-income Americans. Instead, this Administration must use America’s miners for our future, prioritize American energy independence, and keep prices down at the gas pump. The time is now to protect the most vulnerable Americans by developing our domestic resources.
Pete Stauber represents Minnesota’s 8thdistrict in the US House of Representatives. Representative Stauber is a member of the House Committees on Natural Resources, where he is the top Republican on the Energy and Mineral Resources Subcommittee, along with Transportation and Infrastructure, and Small Business. He recently introduced H.R 2604 – Accessing America’s Critical Minerals Act of 2021 and has co-sponsored similar legislation to protect American energy independence.
Derrick Hollie is the founder of Reaching America, a 501(C)(4) organization that uses grassroots efforts, social media, traditional media, and PR to advocate for reduced regulation on the fossil fuel industry as well as other issues affecting African Americans and other vulnerable communities in our country today.
Despite security threats and growing local resentment, China continues to pump billions of dollars into Pakistan and invest in a wide range of sectors.
The multibillion-dollar China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), announced in 2015, aimed to overhaul Pakistan's crumbling infrastructure and link the nation's southern port of Gwadar to western China.
The ambitious project, part of Chinese President Xi Jinping's signature Belt and Road Initiative, was originally estimated to bring in $46 billion of investment into Pakistan. But it's now estimated to have increased to about $65 billion.
Beijing has been pumping money not only to Pakistan's economic hubs, but also to places like Pakistan-administered Kashmir and northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.
Qaiser Ahmed Shaikh, a former president of the Karachi Chambers of Commerce, said that China has moved in to fill the gap left by the West.
Many Pakistanis remain euphoric about the growing Chinese investment, arguing that it's needed to pull Pakistan out of a severe ongoing economic crisis.
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken has expressed his strong concerns about the military coup in Myanmar to his counterparts from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.
After the virtual foreign ministerial meeting arranged by Brunei, the chair of ASEAN, Blinken tweeted that the 10-member group is "key to the future of the Indo-Pacific," apparently in mind of China's growing clout in the region.
Blinken stressed the U.S. contribution to the response to the pandemic, including donating more than 23 million vaccine doses to ASEAN member states, and announced that the United States plans to provide $500,000 to their COVID-19 response fund to support the purchase of vaccines.
In a related move, U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman had a phone call with a representative of Myanmar's government in exile the same day, according to the State Department.
ASEAN countries are Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.
Israel names head of the Revolutionary Guard's UAV command and its air force commander as responsible for the attack on an Israeli-linked ship off the coast of Oman.
Israeli's Defense and Foreign ministers said Saeed Ara Jani, the head of the drone command, and Amir Ali Hajizadeh, the air force chief, were responsible for the attack on Mercer Street, which killed two crew members – a Briton and a Romanian.
On a recording from one of the vessels, called Asphalt Princess, shared with The Associated Press, a crew member can be heard telling the Emirati coast guard that five or six armed Iranians had boarded the tanker.
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken vowed a "collective response." Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said Israel "know[s] how to act alone" against Iran.
Sydney mathematician Daniel Mansfield has now revealed the 3700-year-old artifact from the Old Babylonian period contains the earliest example of complex geometry.
It shows trigonometry did not begin with the Greeks studying the sky but with the Babylonians surveying the ground.
The tablet, known as Si.427, dates from the Old Babylonian period – 1900 to 1600 BCE – and Dr. Mansfield discovered the land surveyor used a type of trigonometry now known as "Pythagorean triples" to make accurate right angles.
In 2017, Dr. Mansfield speculated that another artifact from the same period, Plimpton 322, was a unique kind of trigonometric table.
But he could only guess the purpose of the Plimpton 322, hypothesizing that it had a practical use, possibly used to construct palaces and temples, build canals, or survey fields.
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