Date: Wednesday, July 13, 2022
WASHINGTON — The Department of the Interior today announced the dates of public listening sessions hosted by the Interagency Working Group on Mining Regulations, Laws, and Permitting to gather information and develop recommendations for improving federal hardrock mining regulations, laws and permitting processes.
As the Biden-Harris administration advances its critical minerals strategy, including expanding domestic production in a responsible manner, the Interior Department is committed to ensuring that actions uphold the strongest environmental, sustainability and safety standards. The Department is also committed to robust Tribal consultation and community engagement, to ensure that the minerals and materials used in electric vehicles, smartphones, solar panels and other technology are sourced under responsible social, environmental and labor standards.
The Interagency Working Group supports President Biden’s vision for an all-of-government effort to promote the sustainable and responsible domestic production of critical minerals. Its formation followed a recommendation from the 100-Day Reports that were produced under Executive Order 14017 on America’s Supply Chains and congressional direction to identify reforms in support of the development of critical minerals.
Hardrock mining on public lands — which includes gold, silver, copper, uranium, lithium and nearly all critical minerals — is still governed by the General Mining Law of 1872. This framework does not provide a comprehensive system to evaluate, permit, develop and reclaim mines.
The interagency group is slated to host virtual public listening sessions on the following dates. Those interested in attending or speaking can register at the appropriate links:
In addition, the comment period will be extended for the request for information notice, which announced the formation of the interagency working group in March 2022. The public comment period will now end on August 30, 2022.
More information on submitting public comment will be available in the Federal Register later this week.