U.S. Senators Mike Enzi and John Barrasso, both R-Wyo., sent a letter urging the Trump administration to support the development of a fully domestic rare earths supply chain and reduce U.S. dependence on foreign minerals that are critical for manufacturing our defense technologies and supporting our national security.
In the letter, sent to Secretary of Defense Mark Esper and Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt, the senators wrote:
“It is clear that our dependence on China for vital rare earths threatens our U.S. manufacturing and defense industrial base. As the October 2018 Defense Industrial Base (DIB) Report states: ‘China represents a significant and growing risk to the supply of materials deemed strategic and critical to U.S. national security.’ […] Ensuring a U.S. supply of domestically sourced rare earths will reduce our vulnerability to supply disruptions that poses a grave risk to our military readiness.”
The letter was led by U.S. Senator Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and was also signed by U.S. Senators Tom Cotton, R-Ark., Cory Gardner, R-Colo., and Martha McSally, R-Ariz.
The letter may be read here.