This Week in Energy
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May Discussion
Continuing Discussion
By Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK)
Chairman, U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources
"We need a wide array of strategic minerals to build the solar panels, batteries, electric vehicles, pipelines, and other infrastructure needed to power our society. To produce more of these technologies, we will need a massive increase in supplies of lithium, cobalt, nickel, and graphite, to name just a few. Yet China has consolidated its power over their production and processing while America lags far behind.... As our country begins to emerge from the current crisis and considers options to restore our economy, it is critical that we set a course for long-term resilience by addressing the supply chain vulnerabilities the pandemic has exposed. That should start with mineral security—and the modernization of federal policies that will serve to protect us going forward. " Read more.
Please respond to a comment or one of the discussion questions below:
  • Question 1: What impacts from COVID are you seeing on energy supply chains in your role at your company or organization? Has this brought new insights or caused you to view energy supply chains differently?
  • Question 2: What actions can the United States take to develop domestic critical mineral supplies and supply chains? Is there anything you would add to the Senator’s American Mineral Security Act?
  • Question 3: Which domestic clean energy supply chains are set up for success, and which need additional support, especially for resilience amid a pandemic or other supply chain challenge?
"This is a really important comment from Senator Murkowski.... What’s really important to understand is China’s forward-thinking in building out this electric vehicle supply chain which started well over a decade ago . It has not just built an entire suite of super-sized battery megafactories for its auto industry, but the entire supply chain to feed them. Despite common thought, China produces only 23% of key battery raw materials combined. Yet it produced 80% of the next step in the chain battery chemicals and 66% of cathodes, 82% of anodes, and 72% of battery cells. The further downstream of the supply chain you go towards an electric vehicle, the more dominant China’s position is.... "
- Simon Moores , Managing Director, Benchmark Mineral Intelligence
"I have long felt that the world, not just the U.S., was making a mistake. We were rushing headlong to replace one limited resource with a different one that had the additional features of being difficult to predict and highly variable in terms of supply .... Variability of supply is that flaw. What makes it worse is that every place the energy density is the highest it is also the most variable ...."
- Bruce Best , Director, Ocean Power Systems
Energy Headlines
The Augusta Chronicle
Utility Dive
Boston Globe
New Publications in the OurEnergyLibrary
Atlantic Council Global Energy Center
May 16, 2020
Solar Energy Industries Association
May 19, 2020
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
May 20, 2020
Find these new publications and others in the OurEnergyLibrary.
Podcast Spotlight

In this Minerals Manhattan Project podcast , CEO of US Critical Minerals Jesse Edmondson walks host Emily Hersch through the mineral exploration process from discovery through to the decision to build a mine and puts critical minerals into context. Jesse explains the lack of federal regulation or oversight for mining in the United States, and how mineral rights and surface rights are related but impacted by history. 
Update from Congress

Thurs, May 21 -

Wed, May 20 -
Featured Energy Events
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Visit the Events Calendar to see events from energy organizations across the country.
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