Comment Letter: Support for the American Energy Innovation Act

March 4, 2020 

The Honorable Lisa Murkowski
Chair, Energy and Natural Resources Committee
United States Senate
709 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510 

Re: American Energy Innovation Act

Dear Senator Murkowski: 

The Resource Development Council for Alaska, Inc. (RDC) is writing in support of the American Energy Innovation Act, including inclusion of the American Mineral Security Act (S. 1317).

RDC is an Alaska trade association comprised of individuals and companies from Alaska’s fishing, forestry, mining, oil and gas, and tourism industries. RDC’s membership includes Alaska Native corporations, local communities, organized labor, and industry support firms. RDC’s purpose is to encourage a strong, diversified private sector in Alaska and expand the state’s economic base through the responsible development of our natural resources.

RDC applauds you for including the mineral security provisions in the energy bill as it is imperative America take action to secure critical minerals and not be so dependent on China and other foreign sources for them. Our strategic critical minerals import reliance is alarming. 

We appreciate your efforts to champion American minerals security legislation that would modernize the federal permitting process to improve access to minerals critical to the economy and the expansion of renewable sources of energy. According to the World Bank, demand for the minerals needed for future energy technologies could increase 1,000 percent. We must prepare now to meet such demand and to ensure access to domestic supplies to avoid an acute reliance on foreign imports. 

America has the mineral resources within its borders to meet demand for future technologies, end our overreliance on imports of critical minerals, and achieve mineral security. Your legislation is a big step toward reaching these worthy goals.

RDC also supports elements of your legislation that would advance the development of carbon capture technologies. Innovation will play a key role in curbing our emissions while meeting domestic energy demand. 

Thank you for including the vital issue of mineral security in the American Energy Innovation Act. Strategic minerals and energy security go hand-in-hand. Critical minerals will be essential to future energy and transportation systems. We appreciate your foresight and acknowledgment of the role minerals play as our energy technologies evolve.

Resource Development Council for Alaska, Inc.