230517 H Con Res 34 Superior National Forest Restoration Act House Natural Resources
May 17, 2023
Dear Chairman Westerman and Ranking Member Grivalja:
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce urges the Committee to favorably report H.Con.Res. 34, expressing disapproval of the withdrawal by the Secretary of the Interior of approximately 225,504 acres of National Forest System lands in Cook, Lake, and Saint Louis Counties, Minnesota, from disposition under the United States mineral and geothermal leasing laws. We also support H.R. 3195, the “Superior National Forest Restoration Act,” which would reverse the withdrawal and reinstate mineral leases in the area granted prior to January 2021.
Rapidly increasing demand for critical minerals coupled with advancing geopolitical instability makes developing a strong and reliable domestic critical minerals supply chain vital to America’s future. Our current attempts to secure the mineral supply chain rely too heavily on foreign sources while slowing or halting completely the ability to expand domestic mining. To reverse that trend and meet the U.S.’s ambitious infrastructure and clean energy goals, we must invest in, rather than block, the responsible development of our abundant natural resources across the country, including the rich supply of copper, nickel, cobalt and platinum group metals available in Minnesota. The Administration’s decision to cut this land off from development presents risks to both our national and energy security.
The Chamber supports both H.Con.Res. 34 and the Superior National Forest Restoration Act, and we urge the Committee to favorably report both measures.
Neil L. Bradley
Executive Vice President, Chief Policy Officer,
and Head of Strategic Advocacy
U.S. Chamber of Commerce
cc: Members of the House Committee on Natural Resources