Nathan Picarsic, co-founder of Horizon Advisory, joins Lucas Bagno and Ian Cinnamon on this episode of Solarpunk. Takeaways:
- There are 17 rare earth metals that are of immense strategic importance. They are used in a vast array of everyday products like consumer electronics, medical devices, electric vehicles, and more.
- China has a strong influence in this space. They have many mines but are even more dominant downstream — they control much of the processing of these metals and the manufacturing of products from them.
- Nathan says there should be more awareness of the geopolitical risks associated with rare earth metals, there should be more investment in the space within the US, and the US should work with its partners and allies to help secure the supply chain.
- China’s ambitions to control rare earth metals intersect with their Belt and Road initiative and their Made in China 2025 strategies.
- Nathan says that the US needs policy changes to combat this threat, including changes to the tax code to incentivize investment, encouraging more domestic and allied materials in the supply chain, using the Defense Production Act, and monitoring market manipulation by China.
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