Facing Fossil Fuel Insecurities, the US Invokes the Defense Production Act for Battery Minerals

By invoking the Defense Production Act, the U.S. sends a reminder that fossil fuel reliance is a national security risk.

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If you could mine any mineral, which would it be?

After pressure from both Democratic and Republican senators, President Biden is invoking the Defense Production Act to encourage domestic production of the minerals used in batteries for electric vehicles and long-term energy storage, minerals such as lithium, nickel, cobalt, and graphite. This move has major implications for U.S. national security and the global climate, and also serves as a reminder of some of the fossil fuel dynamics behind the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Ethan breaks down the reasoning for this bipartisan move in the U.S. and examines some other transformations in the global energy sector in this week’s “Tip of the Iceberg.”

The Sweaty Penguin is presented by Peril and Promise: a public media initiative from The WNET Group in New York, reporting on the issues and solutions around climate change. You can learn more at pbs.org/perilandpromise.

Support the show and unlock exclusive merch, bonus content, and more for as little as $5/month at patreon.com/thesweatypenguin. Get your environmental questions featured on “Tip of the Iceberg” by contacting us on Patreon, email, or social media. Questions from patrons move to the front of the line!

Writers: Ethan Brown, Shannon Damiano, Maddy Schmidt
Editor: Frank Hernandez
Producers: Olivia Amitay, Ethan Brown, Megan Crimmins, Shannon Damiano, Frank Hernandez, Dain Kim, Caroline Koehl
Ad Voiceover: Shannon Damiano
Music: Brett Sawka

The opinions expressed in this podcast are those of the host and guests. They do not necessarily reflect the opinions or views of Peril and Promise or The WNET Group.

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The Sweaty Penguin
The Sweaty Penguin is a digital news source and podcast aiming to make environmental issues less overwhelming and politicized and more accessible and fun.


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