< Back to S. 4031 (111th Congress, 2009–2010)

Text of the Rare Earths Supply-Chain Technology and Resources Transformation Act of 2010

This bill was introduced on December 15, 2010, in a previous session of Congress, but was not enacted. The text of the bill below is as of Dec 15, 2010 (Introduced).

Source: GPO

II

111th CONGRESS

2d Session

S. 4031

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

December 15, 2010

(for himself and Mr. Bond) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources

A BILL

To promote exploration for and development of rare earth elements in the United States, to reestablish a competitive supply chain for rare earth materials in the United States and countries that are allies of the United States, and for other purposes.

1.

Short title

(a)

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Rare Earths Supply-Chain Technology and Resources Transformation Act of 2010 or the RESTART Act.

(b)

Table of contents

The table of contents for this Act is as follows:

Sec. 1. Short title.

Sec. 2. Findings.

Sec. 3. Statement of policy with respect to the reestablishment of a rare earth materials supply chain in the United States and countries that are allies of the United States.

Sec. 4. Definitions.

Sec. 5. Actions to promote exploration for and development of rare earth elements in the United States.

Sec. 6. Executive agents for matters related to the rare earth materials supply chain.

Sec. 7. Assessments related to rare earth supply chain vulnerability.

Sec. 8. Rare earth materials loan guarantee program.

Sec. 9. Rare earth materials program.

Sec. 10. Defense-related manufacturing of rare earth materials.

Sec. 11. Study on cooperative development of production of and supply chain for rare earth materials in the United States.

Sec. 12. Restrictions on use of appropriated funds.

Sec. 13. Amendments to the National Materials and Minerals Policy, Research and Development Act of 1980.

Sec. 14. Repeal of National Critical Materials Act of 1984.

2.

Findings

Congress makes the following findings:

(1)

Significant quantities of rare earth elements are used in the production of clean energy technologies, including advanced automotive propulsion batteries, electric motors, high-efficiency light bulbs, solar panels, and wind turbines. These technologies are used to advance the United States energy policy of reducing dependence on foreign oil and decreasing greenhouse gas emissions through expansion of cleaner sources of energy.

(2)

Many modern defense technologies, such as radar and sonar systems, precision-guided weapons, cruise missiles, and lasers, cannot be built, as designed and specified, without the use of rare earth elements and materials produced from them.

(3)

Rare earth materials also provide core functionality to a variety of high technology applications in computing, pollution abatement, power generation, water treatment, oil refining, metal alloying, communications, health care, agriculture, and other sectors.

(4)

Although at least 40 percent of the world’s reserves of rare earth elements are located within the United States and countries that are allies of the United States, the United States now depends on imports for nearly 100 percent of its needs for rare earth materials because there are virtually no active producers of rare earth materials in the United States.

(5)

The United States remains nearly entirely dependent on overseas refineries for elemental and alloy processing of rare earth elements and does not currently maintain a strategic reserve of rare earth compounds, metals, or alloys.

(6)

By way of contrast, more than 97 percent of all rare earth materials for world consumption are produced in the People's Republic of China. The ability and willingness of China to export rare earth materials is eroding due to the growing demand for such materials in China, the enforcement of environmental laws on current producers by the Government of China, and the mandate of the Government of China to consolidate the rare earth materials industry by decreasing the number of mining permits.

(7)

The Government of China has taken several steps recently that have caused significant perturbations in the market for rare earth materials. For example, the draft rare earth materials plan for 2009 to 2015 of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology of China proposed an immediate ban on the exportation of dysprosium, terbium, thulium, lutetium, and yttrium, the so-called heavy rare earth elements, and a restriction on the exportation of all other, light, rare earth metals to a level well below that sufficient to satisfy the 2008 demand of Japan alone for such metals.

(8)

In July 2010, the Government of China decreased the export quota allocations for rare earth oxides and metals by more than 70 percent, causing price increases of three to eight times and causing supply shortages of some materials.

(9)

In September 2010, the Government of China reportedly restricted the exportation of all rare earth oxides and metals to Japan over a diplomatic incident.

(10)

In October 2010, the Government of China reportedly restricted the exportation of all rare earth oxides and metals to the United States and Europe, essentially cutting off the global community from supplies of rare earth materials.

(11)

Given that the dominance of the rare earth materials market by China has adversely impacted the stability of the supply of such materials and endangers the access of the United States and allies of the United States to such materials, rare earth materials should qualify as materials either strategic or critical to national security.

(12)

As such, there is an urgent need to identify and assess the current global market situation with respect to rare earth materials, the strategic value placed on rare earth materials by foreign countries including China, and the vulnerability of the supply chains of the Department of Defense and the domestic manufacturing industry for rare earth elements and products containing rare earth elements, such as neodymium iron boron and other specialty magnets and rare earth doped lasers.

(13)

The United States should facilitate the reestablishment of a globally competitive rare earth materials industry, in countries other than China, with multiple sources of mining, processing, alloying, and manufacturing to achieve self-sufficiency with respect to the production of rare earth materials.

(14)

That self-sufficiency requires an uninterrupted supply of strategic materials critical to national security and innovative commercial product development, including with respect to rare earth materials, to support the clean energy and defense supply chains.

(15)

The United States currently cannot produce valuable rare earth materials and permanent magnets. The capability to do so should be explored using appropriate research and development projects.

3.

Statement of policy with respect to the reestablishment of a rare earth materials supply chain in the United States and countries that are allies of the United States

It is the policy of the United States—

(1)

to take any and all actions necessary to ensure the reestablishment of a competitive supply chain for rare earth materials in the United States and in countries that are allies of the United States; and

(2)

that such a supply chain should include the capacity to conduct mining, refining, processing, alloying, and manufacturing operations using suppliers in the United States and countries that are allies of the United States to provide a secure source of rare earth materials as a vital component of national security and economic policy.

4.

Definitions

In this Act:

(1)

Alloy

The term alloy means a partial or complete solid solution of one or more elements in a metallic matrix.

(2)

Alloying

The term alloying means the melting of metal to create a metallic matrix.

(3)

Clean energy technology

The term clean energy technology means a technology related to the production, use, transmission, storage, control, or conservation of energy that is designed to—

(A)

reduce the need for additional energy supplies by—

(i)

using existing energy supplies with greater efficiency; or

(ii)

transmitting, distributing, or transporting energy with greater effectiveness through the infrastructure of a country;

(B)

diversify the sources of the energy supply of a country—

(i)

to strengthen energy security; and

(ii)

to increase supplies of energy in a manner that reflects consideration of the environmental effects of the entire energy supply system; or

(C)

contribute to a stabilization of atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations through reduction, avoidance, or sequestration of energy-related emissions.

(4)

Process

The term process, in the case of a rare earth oxide, means the conversion of the oxide into usable rare earth metals and specialty alloys and powders for domestic magnet and other manufacturing.

(5)

Rare earth

The term rare earth means any of the following chemical elements in any of their physical forms or chemical combinations:

(A)

Scandium.

(B)

Yttrium.

(C)

Lanthanum.

(D)

Cerium.

(E)

Praseodymium.

(F)

Neodymium.

(G)

Promethium.

(H)

Samarium.

(I)

Europium.

(J)

Gadolinium.

(K)

Terbium.

(L)

Dysprosium.

(M)

Holmium.

(N)

Erbium.

(O)

Thulium.

(P)

Ytterbium.

(Q)

Lutetium.

(6)

Refine

The term refine, in the case of a rare earth element extracted from rock, means the separation and purification of the rare earth element to commercial grades of oxides or other salts such as oxalates or chlorides.

5.

Actions to promote exploration for and development of rare earth elements in the United States

(a)

Policy

It is the policy of the United States that each Federal agency shall take appropriate actions, to the extent consistent with applicable law, to expedite permitting and projects that will increase exploration for, and development of, rare earth elements in the United States.

(b)

Rare earth policy task force

(1)

Establishment

There is established within the Department of the Interior a task force to be known as the Rare Earth Policy Task Force (in this section referred to as the Task Force), which shall report to the President through the Secretary of the Interior.

(2)

Composition

The Task Force shall be composed of the following:

(A)

The Secretary of the Interior (or a designee), who shall serve as chair of the Task Force.

(B)

The Secretary of Energy (or a designee).

(C)

The Secretary of Agriculture (or a designee).

(D)

The Secretary of Defense (or a designee).

(E)

The Secretary of Commerce (or a designee).

(F)

The Secretary of State (or a designee).

(G)

The Director of the Office of Management and Budget (or a designee).

(H)

The Chairman of the Council on Environmental Quality (or a designee).

(I)

Such other members as the Secretary of the Interior considers appropriate.

(c)

Duties

The Task Force shall—

(1)

monitor and assist Federal agencies in expediting the review and approval of permits or other actions, as necessary, to accelerate the completion of projects that will increase investment in, exploration for, and development of domestic rare earth elements pursuant to the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 (43 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.), the Act of June 4, 1897 (commonly known as the Organic Act of 1897 (16 U.S.C. 473–482, 551)), the National Forest Management Act of 1976 (16 U.S.C. 1600 et seq.), and any other applicable statutory authorities related to domestic mining operations;

(2)

assist Federal agencies in reviewing laws (including regulations) and policies that discourage investment in, exploration for, and development of domestic rare earth elements pursuant to Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976, the Act of June 4, 1897, the National Forest Management Act of 1976, and any other applicable statutory authorities related to domestic mining operations; and

(3)

take such other actions to otherwise increase investment in, exploration for, and development of domestic rare earth elements as the Task Force considers appropriate.

(d)

Annual reports

At least once each year, the Task Force shall submit to the President, the Committee on Natural Resources of the Senate, the Committee on Energy and Commerce of the House of Representatives, and the Committee on Natural Resources of the House of Representatives a report setting forth the following:

(1)

A description of the results of the coordinated and expedited review of permits or other actions to promote investment in, exploration for, and development of domestic rare earth elements, and an identification of the procedures and actions that have proven to be the most useful and appropriate in coordinating and expediting the review of projects that will increase investment in, exploration for, and development of domestic rare earth elements.

(2)

An identification of the substantive and procedural requirements of Federal, State, tribal, and local laws (including regulations) and Executive orders that are inconsistent with, duplicative of, or structured so as to restrict effective implementation of the projects described in paragraph (1).

(3)

Such recommendations as the Task Force considers appropriate to advance the policy set forth in subsection (a).

(e)

Judicial review

(1)

In general

Nothing in this section shall be construed to affect any judicial review of an agency action under any other provision of law.

(2)

Construction

This section—

(A)

is intended to improve the internal management of the Federal Government; and

(B)

does not create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or equity by a party against the United States (including an agency, instrumentality, officer, or employee of the United States) or any other person.

6.

Executive agents for matters related to the rare earth materials supply chain

(a)

Establishment

Not later than 30 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Commerce, the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of Energy, the Secretary of the Interior, and the Secretary of State shall jointly establish an interagency working group for the purposes of reestablishing the production of, and a competitive supply chain for, rare earth materials in the United States.

(b)

Representatives of executive departments

(1)

In general

The Secretary of Commerce, the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of Energy, the Secretary of the Interior, and the Secretary of State shall each appoint in the department under the jurisdiction of such Secretary an Executive Agent to serve as a representative on the interagency working group established under subsection (a). Each Executive Agent so appointed shall be an Assistant Secretary of the department concerned.

(2)

Deadline for initial appointment of representatives

The initial appointment under paragraph (1) of representatives to the interagency working group established under subsection (a) shall be made not later than 30 days after the date of the enactment of this Act.

7.

Assessments related to rare earth supply chain vulnerability

(a)

Report on rare earth supply chain vulnerability

(1)

In general

Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of Energy shall jointly, in consultation with the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of Commerce, the Secretary of State, and the United States Trade Representative—

(A)

conduct an assessment of the vulnerability of the supply chain for rare earth materials in the United States; and

(B)

determine pursuant to such assessment which rare earth elements are critical to clean energy technologies and the national and economic security of the United States.

(2)

Submittal to Congress

(A)

In general

Not later than 270 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of Energy shall jointly submit to Congress a report setting forth the results of the assessment and the determinations under paragraph (1).

(B)

Form

The report required by subparagraph (A) shall be submitted in unclassified form.

(b)

Report on establishment of a rare earth stockpile

Not later than one year after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of Energy shall jointly, in consultation with the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of Commerce, the Secretary of State, and the United States Trade Representative, submit to Congress a report setting forth the following:

(1)

A determination with respect to whether the rare earth materials determined to be critical to clean energy technologies and the national and economic security of the United States pursuant to subsection (a)(1)(B) should be procured and placed in a stockpile.

(2)

A description of legal authorities required to procure and place in a stockpile the rare earth materials so determined to be critical to clean energy technologies and the national and economic security of the United States.

(3)

Recommendations on criteria and considerations necessary to determine the commencement and termination of the stockpiling of such materials.

(4)

Recommendations on criteria and considerations with respect to the use of materials in the stockpile, such as in instances of—

(A)

the importation of rare earth materials into the United States in violation of the antidumping or countervailing duty provisions of title VII of the Tariff Act of 1930 (19 U.S.C. 1671 et seq.); or

(B)

other violations of the WTO Agreement or the agreements annexed to the WTO Agreement by WTO member countries with respect to the importation or exportation of rare earth materials.

(5)

An assessment of the funding required, not including the cost of the rare earth materials, to commence, operate, and terminate the stockpiling of rare earth materials.

(c)

Definitions

In this section:

(1)

Agreements annexed to the WTO Agreement

The term agreements annexed to the WTO Agreement means the agreements referred to in section 101(d) of the Uruguay Round Agreements Act (19 U.S.C. 3511(d)).

(2)

Stockpile

The term stockpile means a strategic reserve of rare earth oxides, and storable forms of rare earth elements and alloys for purposes of clean energy technology and the national and economic security of the United States.

(3)

WTO Agreement; WTO member country

The terms WTO Agreement and WTO member country have the meanings given those terms in section 2 of the Uruguay Round Agreements Act (19 U.S.C. 3501).

8.

Rare earth materials loan guarantee program

(a)

Amendment

Title XVII of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (42 U.S.C. 16511 et seq.) is amended by adding at the end the following:

1706.

Temporary program for rare earth materials revitalization

(a)

Authority of Secretary

(1)

In general

Subject to the availability of appropriations, the Secretary may make guarantees under this title for the commercial application of new or significantly improved technologies (as compared to technologies in use in the United States as of the date on which the guarantee is made) for each project category described in paragraph (2).

(2)

Project categories

A project category referred to in paragraph (1) includes—

(A)

the separation and recovery of rare earth materials from ores or other sources;

(B)

the preparation of rare earth materials in oxide, metal, alloy, or other forms needed for—

(i)

national security purposes;

(ii)

the economic well-being of the United States; or

(iii)

industrial production purposes;

(C)

the application of rare earth materials in the production of improved—

(i)

magnets;

(ii)

batteries;

(iii)

refrigeration systems;

(iv)

optical systems;

(v)

electronics;

(vi)

catalysis; and

(vii)

applications that the Secretary determines to be necessary; and

(D)

the application of rare earth materials in any other appropriate use, as determined by the Secretary.

(b)

Timeliness

To the maximum extent practicable, in a manner that is consistent with the appropriate protection of the interests of the taxpayers of the United States, the Secretary shall minimize any delay in approving applications for loan guarantees under this section.

(c)

Cooperation

To the maximum extent practicable, the Secretary shall cooperate with appropriate private sector participants to achieve a complete rare earth materials production capability in the United States by the date that is 5 years after the date of enactment of the Rare Earths and Critical Materials Revitalization Act of 2010.

(d)

Limitations

The Secretary may make a guarantee for a project described in subsection (a)(2) only if the project, due to technical or financial uncertainly, is not, as of the date of receipt of the application for the guarantee—

(1)

being undertaken by the private sector; or

(2)

likely to be undertaken by the private sector.

(e)

Termination of authority

The authority provided by this section shall terminate on September 30, 2015.

.

(b)

Table of contents amendment

The table of contents in section 1(b) of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (Public Law 109–58; 119 Stat. 594) is amended by inserting after the item relating to section 1705 the following:

Sec. 1706. Temporary program for rare earth materials revitalization.

.

9.

Rare earth materials program

(a)

Definitions

In this section:

(1)

Institution of higher education

The term institution of higher education has the meaning given the term in section 102 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1002).

(2)

Program

The term program means a program for the research, development, demonstration, and commercial application of rare earth materials established by subsection (b).

(3)

Secretary

The term Secretary means the Secretary of Energy.

(b)

Establishment

There is established in the Department of Energy a program to ensure the long-term, secure, and sustainable supply of rare earth materials in quantities that are sufficient to satisfy the national security, economic well-being, and industrial production needs of the United States.

(c)

Program activities

In carrying out the program, the Secretary shall support activities—

(1)

to better characterize and quantify virgin stocks of rare earth materials using theoretical geochemical research;

(2)

to explore, discover, and recover rare earth materials using advanced science and technology;

(3)

to improve methods for the extraction, processing, use, recovery, and recycling of rare earth materials;

(4)

to improve the understanding of the performance, processing, and adaptability in engineering designs of rare earth materials;

(5)

to identify and test alternative materials that could be substituted for rare earth materials in particular applications;

(6)

to engineer and test applications that—

(A)

use recycled rare earth materials;

(B)

use alternative materials; or

(C)

seek to minimize rare earth materials content;

(7)

to collect, catalogue, archive, and disseminate information on rare earth materials, including scientific and technical data generated by the research and development activities supported under this section;

(8)

to assist scientists and engineers in making the fullest possible use of the data holdings described in paragraph (7);

(9)

to facilitate information-sharing and collaboration among program participants and stakeholders; and

(10)

to assess, and subsequently provide for, the appropriate protection of intellectual property regarding research, processing, and use of rare earth materials, including—

(A)

applications in magnetic materials and catalysts;

(B)

processing of proprietary materials; and

(C)

techniques used in solvent extraction.

(d)

Improved processes and technologies

To the maximum extent practicable, the Secretary shall support new or significantly improved processes and technologies as compared to processes and technologies, as of the date of enactment of this Act, that are in use in the rare earth materials industry.

(e)

Expansion of participation

In carrying out the program, the Secretary shall encourage—

(1)

multidisciplinary collaborations among program participants; and

(2)

extensive opportunities for students at institutions of higher education, including each institution described in section 371(a) of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1067q(a)).

(f)

Consistency

The Secretary shall carry out the program in a manner consistent with the each policy and program described in the National Materials and Minerals Policy, Research and Development Act of 1980 (30 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.).

(g)

International collaboration

To the maximum extent practicable, in carrying out the program, the Secretary may collaborate on activities of mutual interest with any relevant agency of a foreign country that has an interest relating to rare earth materials.

(h)

Plan

(1)

In general

Not later than 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act and biennially thereafter, in accordance with paragraph (2), the Secretary shall prepare and submit to the appropriate committees of Congress a plan that contains a description of, for the period covered by the plan, the manner by which carry out the program.

(2)

Specific requirements

A plan described in paragraph (1) shall contain a description of—

(A)

for the 2-year period beginning on the date of submission of the plan, the research and development activities to be carried out under the program;

(B)

the expected contributions of the program to the creation of innovative methods and technologies for the efficient and sustainable provision of rare earth materials to the domestic economy of the United States;

(C)

the criteria to be used to evaluate applications for loan guarantees under section 1706 of the Energy Policy Act of 2005;

(D)

any project that receives loan guarantee support under section 1706 of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (including the status of the project);

(E)

the manner by which the program promotes the broadest possible participation by academic, industrial, and other contributors; and

(F)
(i)

each action taken or proposed that reflects recommendations from the assessment conducted under subsection (i); or

(ii)

the rationale of the Secretary for not taking action pursuant to any recommendation of an assessment under subsection (i) for a plan submitted following the completion of an assessment.

(3)

Consultation

In preparing each plan under paragraph (1), the Secretary shall consult with—

(A)

appropriate representatives of industry;

(B)

institutions of higher education;

(C)

National Laboratories;

(D)

professional and technical societies; and

(E)

other appropriate entities, as determined by the Secretary.

(i)

Assessment

(1)

In general

On the date on which the Secretary has carried out the program for 4 years, the Secretary shall offer to enter into an arrangement with the National Academy of Sciences under which the Academy shall conduct an assessment of the program.

(2)

Inclusions

The assessment described in paragraph (1) shall include—

(A)
(i)

the recommendation of the National Academy of Sciences that the program should be continued; and

(ii)

a description of any program improvement that the Academy determines to be necessary; or

(B)
(i)

the recommendation of the National Academy of Sciences that the program should be terminated; and

(ii)

a description of each lesson learned from the conduct of the program.

(3)

Availability

Upon completion, the assessment described in paragraph (1) shall be made available to—

(A)

the appropriate committees of Congress; and

(B)

the public.

10.

Defense-related manufacturing of rare earth materials

(a)

Sense of Congress

It is the sense of Congress that—

(1)

the capability to produce rare earth materials is the backbone of both the defense and energy supply chains;

(2)

the United States lacks sufficient capability to produce rare earth materials;

(3)

there is an urgent need to reestablish a supply chain in the United States for processing rare earth oxides into metals and rare earth magnets; and

(4)

that urgency warrants the exercise of the authority of the President under title I of the Defense Production Act of 1950 (50 U.S.C. App. 2071 et seq.) to support the reestablishment of the capability to produce rare earth materials and the supply chain described in paragraph (3) to meet a deficiency in the defense industrial base and renewable energy sectors of the United States.

(b)

Authorization of appropriations

There are authorized to be appropriated such sums as may be necessary to provide loans or loan guarantees under title III of the Defense Production Act of 1950 (50 U.S.C. App. 2091 et seq.) for which the total loan principal does not exceed—

(1)

$20,000,000 in the case of projects for the establishment of a supply chain in the United States for processing rare earth oxides into metals, into alloys, and into powders; and

(2)

$30,000,000 in the case of projects for the establishment of the capability to produce sintered domestic neodymium iron boron magnets.

(c)

Report

Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Defense shall submit to Congress a report describing past, current, and future projects for which loans or loan guarantees are provided under title III of the Defense Production Act of 1950 to support the reestablishment of a rare earth materials supply chain in the United States. If no such project is in process or planned as of the date of the report, the report shall include a justification for the lack of such projects, particularly the lack of projects to establish or support production capability in the United States in critical segments of the rare earth materials market.

11.

Study on cooperative development of production of and supply chain for rare earth materials in the United States

(a)

Findings

Congress makes the following findings:

(1)

It may not be possible for the United States to depend on any single producer of rare earth materials to supply the production and supply chain requirements necessary for the national security and industrial development of the United States.

(2)

It is also not reasonable to expect any one producer of rare earth materials to overcome the challenges posed by the monopoly in the rare earth materials market sponsored by the Government of the People's Republic of China.

(3)

Therefore, a cooperative effort, involving several producers of rare earth materials, should be considered as a collaborative approach to leverage the resources of the United States and countries that are allies of the United States.

(b)

Study required

The Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of Energy shall jointly, in consultation with the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of Commerce, the Secretary of State, and the United States Trade Representative, conduct a study to determine the feasibility and effectiveness of using a cooperative structure involving multiple producers of rare earth materials to reestablish the production of, and a supply chain for, rare earth materials in the United States.

(c)

Elements

The study required by subsection (b) shall include an assessment of the following:

(1)

Whether establishing a cooperative involving multiple producers of rare earth materials to reestablish the production of, and a supply chain for, rare earth materials in the United States would be in the national security and industrial development interests of the United States, including by—

(A)

resulting in improved heavy rare earth elements distribution values for a cooperative refinery described in paragraph (3); and

(B)

creating depth in the supply chain for rare earth materials.

(2)

The qualifications necessary for a producer of rare earth materials to participate in the cooperative described in paragraph (1), such as whether such a producer should be—

(A)

permitted, based, and owned in the United States;

(B)

capable of producing both heavy and light rare earth elements; or

(C)

eligible for any of the loan guarantee programs described in paragraph (3).

(3)

How existing programs could be used to facilitate the establishment of a national cooperative rare earth refinery by providing financing to rare earth elements mines that are owned and permitted in the United States, such as through—

(A)

loan guarantees under title III of the Defense Production Act of 1950 (50 U.S.C. App. 2091 et seq.) or section 1706 of the Energy Policy Act of 2005, as added by section 8 of this Act; or

(B)

funds in the National Defense Stockpile Transaction Fund under section 9 of the Strategic and Critical Materials Stock Piling Act (50 U.S.C. 98h).

(4)

The areas of knowledge, expertise, and skill that would be necessary to the success of a cooperative refinery described in paragraph (3), such as—

(A)

production of rare earth elemental oxides and metals from rare earth concentrates;

(B)

production of any companion materials such as tellurium, vanadium, cobalt, thorium, or other strategic materials and metals; and

(C)

development and use of front end processes required by certain rare earth concentrates and use of back end processes for rare earth oxides.

(5)

Other characteristics necessary to the success of the refinery, such as the ability and willingness to purchase rare earth concentrates from producers that participate in the cooperative described in paragraph (1) and producers that do not participate in the cooperative.

(6)

How to allow the participation in the cooperative of producers of rare earth materials from countries that are allies of the United States, such as through direct investment by such producers in the cooperative refinery described in paragraph (3).

(7)

The advisability of establishing a special advisory board to ensure that the cooperative meets the national security and industrial development needs of the United States, consisting of representatives of the producers participating in the cooperative, the United States Geological Survey, the Society of Mining, Metallurgy and Exploration, the Department of Defense (including representation with respect to the National Defense Stockpile), the Department of Energy, and other appropriate Federal agencies and nongovernmental organizations.

(8)

The advisability of providing the special advisory board described in paragraph (7) with authority to expend funds in the National Defense Stockpile Transaction Fund under section 9 of the Strategic and Critical Materials Stock Piling Act (50 U.S.C. 98h) for the development of the cooperative.

(9)

Whether the cooperative could increase the viability of the supply chain for rare earth materials in the United States and countries that are allies of the United States by providing or participating in pre-feasibility and exploration funding for promising rare earth mining companies.

(10)

The feasibility and desirability of establishing a design and prototype team at an organization that may participate in the cooperative, such as a institution of higher education, to provide technology transfer services to participants in the cooperative.

(11)

The funds necessary to establish the cooperative and the advisability of selling materials in a stockpile of rare earth materials as described in section 7(b), if such a stockpile is established, to maintain the financial integrity of the cooperative, if necessary.

(d)

Report

Not later than one year after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of Energy shall jointly submit to Congress a report on the results of the study required by subsection (b).

12.

Restrictions on use of appropriated funds

A person that receives funds appropriated by Congress for the purpose of supporting the reestablishment of the production of, and a supply chain for, rare earth materials in the United States, as described in this Act—

(1)

may not sell or otherwise transfer any resources or assets purchased, in whole or in part, using such funds to a foreign-owned or controlled entity without the concurrence of the Secretary of Energy, the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of State, and the Secretary of Commerce; and

(2)

shall be subject to the provisions of section 2538 of title 10, United States Code, in the utilization of such funds, including with respect to any rare earth materials sold by the person.

13.

Amendments to the National Materials and Minerals Policy, Research and Development Act of 1980

(a)

Policy

Section 3 of the National Materials and Minerals Policy, Research and Development Act of 1980 (30 U.S.C. 1602) is amended—

(1)

in the first sentence, by striking The Congress declares that it and inserting It; and

(2)

in the second sentence, by striking The Congress further declares that implementation and inserting Implementation.

(b)

Implementation

Section 4 of the National Materials and Minerals Policy, Research and Development Act of 1980 (30 U.S.C. 1603) is amended—

(1)

by striking For the purpose and all that follows through declares that the and inserting The; and

(2)

by striking departments and agencies, and inserting departments and agencies to implement the policies described in section 3.

(c)

Program plan

Section 5 of the National Materials and Minerals Policy, Research and Development Act of 1980 (30 U.S.C. 1604) is amended—

(1)

by striking date of enactment of this Act each place it appears and inserting date of enactment of the Rare Earths and Critical Materials Revitalization Act of 2010;

(2)

in subsection (b)(1), by striking Federal Coordinating Council for Science, Engineering, and Technology and inserting National Science and Technology Council,;

(3)

in subsection (c)—

(A)

in the matter preceding paragraph (1)—

(i)

by striking the Federal Emergency and all that follows through Agency, and; and

(ii)

by striking appropriate shall and inserting appropriate, shall;

(B)

by striking paragraph (1);

(C)

by redesignating paragraph (2) as paragraph (1);

(D)

in paragraph (1) (as redesignated by subparagraph (C)), by striking in the case and all that follows through subsection, and which; and

(E)

by striking paragraph (3) and inserting the following:

(2)

assess the adequacy, accessibility, and stability of the supply of materials necessary to maintain national security, economic well-being, and industrial production.

;

(4)

by striking subsections (d) and (e); and

(5)

by redesignating subsection (f) as subsection (d).

14.

Repeal of National Critical Materials Act of 1984

Title II of Public Law 98–373 (30 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.) is repealed.