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NMA Applauds Permitting Improvement Steering Council Vote

The National Mining Association (NMA) applauded the Federal Permitting Improvement Steering Council’s vote to include mining under projects covered by the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST-41).

“This vote highlights that rebuilding the nation’s transit systems, ports and waterways, pipelines and other projects, cannot happen without timely access to raw materials made available through domestic mining,” said Rich Nolan, NMA president and CEO. “As the front end of our supply chain, American mining is key to successfully repairing our nation’s infrastructure so including mining projects among those covered by FAST-41 is an important first step in addressing permitting delays that have plagued the mining industry for years.”

From surface transportation to electricity transmission and energy production, America’s infrastructure projects begin with minerals such as copper, molybdenum, kyanite and silver. While the U.S. is home to an estimated $6.2 trillion worth of mineral reserves, it is hampered by one of the world’s longest permitting processes, which takes an average of seven to 10 years before a major mining project is approved. These delays disrupt supply chains and hamper the ability to complete large-scale infrastructure projects on time.

Signed into law in 2015, the FAST Act was designed to improve the timeliness, predictability and transparency of the federal environmental review and authorization process for covered infrastructure projects. FAST-41 establishes new procedures that standardize interagency consultation and coordination practices.