Status Report

"National Materials and Minerals Policy, Research and Development Act of 1980" Gao ID: EMD-81-124 July 27, 1981

GAO has been monitoring implementation of the National Materials and Minerals Policy, Research and Development Act.

The executive branch implementation is evolving fairly rapidly and is, therefore, subject to change with respect to both substantive responses being developed and processes being followed. The Executive Office of the President is developing responses required by the Act primarily through the Cabinet Council on Natural Resources and the Environment. The Cabinet Council has created a Strategic Minerals Working Group which will ultimately recommend to the Cabinet Council policy options for dealing with minerals issues. The Office of Science and Technology Policy has not taken any initiatives specifically to implement the Act. A proposed $8.6 million will be shifted into mineral resources technology programs in fiscal year 1982. The Department of Defense has participated in interagency meetings, Government-industry conferences, contracting with the Institute for Defense Analysis for assistance, and assignment of the military departments to aid in assessing the impact of import dependence on specific weapons systems. The Department of Commerce is preparing a study of the aerospace industry which will address supply problems and issues surrounding four critical materials used by the aerospace industry. They are also contributing a demand analysis and a study of U.S. industrial condition in the processing and use of these materials and looking into the international issues involving adequate supplies. The Bureau of Standards is analyzing the possibilities of substitution and recycling.

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