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US infrastructure plans should support primary aluminum, recycling investments: Aluminum Association

Highlights

Grants could promote new low-carbon aluminum production

Other priorities include electric grid, public transportation updates

Pittsburgh — Aluminum Association CEO Tom Dobbins lobbied members of Congress to include US aluminum industry priorities, such as investments for primary aluminum production and recycling, in the country's upcoming infrastructure spending, the association said May 7.

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"[Aluminum] is a key element of any comprehensive strategy to enhance the nation's infrastructure while conserving energy, improving environmental quality and mitigating climate change," the Aluminum Association said in a newsletter.

In a letter sent to Congress, Dobbins said focus on the nation's primary aluminum capacity would be vital in promoting resilient domestic supply chains.

"Congress and the administration should adopt a coordinated federal strategy that would support innovation and invest in the long-term stability of primary aluminum production, fund the deployment of technology to increase US production of high purity aluminum and facilitate crucial supply chain partnerships," the association's leader said.

Support for aluminum production could be achieved through the offering of grants or forgivable loans for capital investment in next generation, low-carbon aluminum production, Dobbins added.

Dobbins also listed funding for domestic recycling programs as a top initiative for consideration, adding that the recently proposed Realizing the Economic Opportunities and Values of Expanding Recycling Act introduces provisions for recycling programs that should be included in infrastructure legislation.

The letter also emphasized the need for updated electrical grids, electric vehicle resources, public transportation, building construction, bridges and truck weight limits, noting that sustainable and reliable aluminum supply is critical to all of these projects.

President Joe Biden said May 6 the US has "failed to properly invest in infrastructure for a half a century."

"I'm going to look to make sure we have the best and most significant infrastructure in the world," Biden told local officials at an event in Lake Charles, Louisiana. "It's time to grow this economy from the bottom up and the middle out."