Owens, Costa reintroduce the bipartisan Mining Schools Act

Today, Reps. Burgess Owens (UT-04) and Jim Costa (CA-16) reintroduced The Mining Schools Act, bipartisan legislation to increase and improve opportunities for America’s university and college mining and geological programs to prepare students to meet future energy needs. 

“America’s miners and geological engineers are essential to rebuilding our economy and re-establishing domestic energy independence,” said Rep. Owens. “In 2018 and 2019, the graduation rates for university and college mining and geological programs decreased by over 21%. The Bipartisan Mining Schools Act benefits programs, like the University of Utah School of Mining and Engineering, by strengthening on-the-job education, deploying top-of-the-line technologies, and increasing grant opportunities. I am proud to reintroduce this bill with Rep. Costa to continue championing today’s students and tomorrow’s energy producers.”

“The past few years have made clear the importance of a secure critical mineral supply chain. We must develop a talented and robust workforce to ensure we meet the growing demand for materials needed to build batteries, electric vehicles, and electronics of the future,” said Rep. Costa. “This bipartisan legislation will provide grant opportunities to schools like Fresno State and CSU Bakersfield to bolster their engineering programs, and other majors that feed into career opportunities in the mining industry.”

“Modern mining depends on a 21st-century workforce that drives innovation, continues to prioritize health and safety while working to reduce environmental risk, and supports the communities where we live and work. To do this, we must recruit, educate, train, and develop tomorrow’s workforce today, giving the tools they will need to meet the challenge of developing the secure domestic supply chain that will deliver economic and national security for future generations. We applaud Reps. Owens and Costa for introducing this legislation and support their efforts to ensure our nation’s miners continue to be the best in the world.” – Rich Nolan, National Mining Association

Specifically, The Mining Schools Act of 2023 would:

  • Establish a grant program for mining schools to receive funds to recruit students and carry out studies, research projects, or demonstration projects related to the production of minerals; and
  • Establish the Mining Professional Development Advisory Board to evaluate applications and recommend recipients to the Secretary of Energy, as well as conduct oversight to ensure that grant funds are appropriately used. 

The full text of the legislation is available here.