Summary: S.1113 — 112th Congress (2011-2012)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for S.1113. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Introduced in Senate (05/26/2011)

Critical Minerals Policy Act of 2011 - Directs the Secretary of the Interior, acting through the Director of the U.S. Geological Survey, to publish in the Federal Register a draft methodology for determining which minerals qualify as critical minerals, based on an assessment of whether they are subject to potential supply restrictions and important in use.

Directs the Secretary to: (1) arrange with the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) and the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) to review the methodology, and (2) publish in the Federal Register minerals designated as critical.

Directs the President to coordinate federal agency actions to facilitate the development and production of domestic resources to meet national critical minerals needs.

Directs the Secretary to conduct a specified national assessment of critical minerals.

Establishes within the Department of the Interior the Critical Minerals Working Group to facilitate federal agency: (1) efforts to optimize efficiencies associated with the permitting of activities that will increase exploration and development of domestic critical minerals; and (2) review of laws, regulations, and policies that discourage investment in domestic critical minerals.

Requires the Administrator of the Small Business Administration (SBA) to submit to certain congressional committees an assessment of federal agency compliance with the Regulatory Flexibility Act in promulgating regulations applicable to the critical minerals industry.

Authorizes the President, upon state request, to enter into a cooperative agreement to process permits for critical mineral manufacturing facilities.

Directs the Secretary of Energy (DOE) to conduct research and development to promote the efficient production, use, recycling of, and alternatives to critical minerals.

Instructs the Secretary of the Interior to make an annual report that includes a comprehensive: (1) review of critical mineral production, consumption, and recycling patterns; and (2) forecast ("Annual Critical Minerals Outlook") of projected patterns.

Instructs the Secretary of Labor to assess the domestic availability of technically trained personnel necessary for critical mineral enterprises, including skills in the shortest supply.

Directs the Secretaries of the Interior and of Labor to arrange jointly with the NAS and the NAE to coordinate with the National Science Foundation (NSF) on a study to design an interdisciplinary program on critical minerals that will support the critical mineral supply chain.

Directs the Secretary of the Interior and the NSF to conduct jointly a competitive program of four-year grants to institutions of higher education to take specified steps to implement integrated critical mineral education, training, innovation, and workforce development programs.

Instructs the Secretary of State to promote international cooperation on critical mineral supply chain issues with U.S. allies.

Directs the DOE Secretary to support research programs for: (1) novel uses for cobalt, including energy technologies and super-alloys; and (2) advanced lead manufacturing processes.

Amends the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 to direct the DOE Secretary to provide grants for research, development, demonstration, and commercial application of domestic industrial processes designed to enhance domestic lithium production for use in advanced battery technologies.

Directs the DOE Secretary to support programs regarding: (1) research, development, commercial application, and conservation to expand domestic production of low-Btu gas and helium resources; (2) advanced membrane technology used in the separation of gases from applications; (3) helium separation technology; and (4) an industrial helium program.

Instructs the Secretary of the Interior to: (1) update existing resource information for phosphate, potash, and rare earth elements; and (2) study the issues associated with establishing a licensing pathway for the complete thorium nuclear fuel cycle.

Repeals: (1) the National Materials and Minerals Policy, Research and Development Act of 1980; and (2) the National Critical Materials Act of 1984.