283163 The Role of a Transformed National Defense Stockpile in U.S. Strategic Materials Security

Tuesday, October 30, 2012: 8:55 AM
406 (Convention Center )
Richard A. Lowden, Materials Science and Technology Division, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN

The United States established a stockpile of strategic materials in 1939 beginning with a handful of ores and minerals which with time was expanded to include additional minerals, metals, chemicals, and other processed materials.   The purpose of the stockpile was to preclude a dangerous and costly dependence by the United States upon foreign sources for supplies of scarce but important materials in times of national emergency.  Although emphasis has traditionally been on the acquisition and retention of certain strategic and critical materials, the legislation includes provisions that encourage the conservation and development of resources and materials.  The authors of the Stockpiling Act realized the value of recycling, improved separation techniques, and alternative methods for refining or processing of materials thus included language to address these issues.  Since 1993 the Stockpile has been downsizing, selling off most of its assets, however, recent changes in the global marketplace and increasing risks associated with the supply of important materials such as the rare earths, interest in the stockpile has been renewed.   The Stockpile is in the process of being transformed in a more flexible and dynamic strategic materials risk management (security) program with much broader scope and applicability with respect to the entire supply chains for important materials.

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See more of this Session: Critical Materials Supply Chain and Sustainability
See more of this Group/Topical: Liaison Functions