RFG 2018 Conference

policy

AGI Releases Geoscience Policy Annual Review for 2017

2017 Geoscience Policy Annual Review
The American Geosciences Institute (AGI) is pleased to announce the publication of its first Geoscience Policy Annual Review, an in-depth summary of the major developments in federal geoscience policy during 2017. Throughout the year, geoscience issues were the focus of significant action by President Trump and the 115th Congress. The Geoscience Policy Annual Review provides a nonpartisan synthesis of legislative, budgetary, and administrative actions across geoscience topics.

President Trump and Secretary Zinke sign orders to advance domestic production of critical minerals

Bingham Copper Mine

Following the release of a USGS report on 23 mineral commodities that are critical for the U.S. economy and security, President Donald Trump signed an executive order to reduce America's dependence on foreign sources of critical minerals. Shortly after the executive order, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke released a secretarial order on December 21 directing the initial steps to producing a nationwide geological and topographical survey of the U.S.

House Natural Resources hearing revisits U.S. dependence on foreign minerals

Technology background

On December 12, the House Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources held an oversight hearing, “Examining Consequences of America’s Growing Dependence on Foreign Minerals,” to discuss reasons for the declining self-sufficiency of the United States for mineral commodities, and the consequences of relying on foreign sources for critical minerals. 

House lawmakers discuss Grand Staircase-Escalante during Natural Resources subcommittee hearing

Gold Panning

The House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Federal Lands held a legislative hearing on December 14 to consider the Grand Staircase Escalante Enhancement Act, introduced by Representative Chris Stewart (R-UT-2) to create Utah’s sixth national park - the Escalante Canyons National Park and Preserve.

Congress reauthorizes U.S. Fire Administration and grant programs in wake of recent wildfire disasters

Hazards fire houses

Following a highly destructive wildfire season this year for the west coast, the House passed the United States Fire Administration, AFG, and SAFER Program Reauthorization Act of 2017 (H.R.4661) to reauthorize the U.S. Fire Administration, the Assistance to Firefighters Grants program, and the Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response grants program through fiscal year 2023. 

Trump administration slashes 2 Utah monuments, with ongoing reviews to spur more reductions

IES Fossils glyp

On December 4, following an ongoing review by the Department of the Interior of 27 national monuments, President Donald Trump signed two proclamations reducing the Bears Ears National Monument and the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in Utah by about 85 percent and 47 percent, respectively. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke publicly released his final report to the President one day later, which recommended modifications to national monuments in Nevada, Oregon, and California.

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