1872 Mining Law Reform


Public Lands

Subsidy Type

Undervalued Asset

Committees of Jurisdiction

Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, House Natural Resources Committee

$0 FY 23 Budget Score (in mil.)
$3,056 FY 23-32 Budget Score (in mil.)

The 1872 Mining Law charges mining companies no royalties for the minerals they remove from federal
lands and allows them to purchase federal land for between $2.50 and $5.00 per acre. There have been
temporary bans on new sales in each appropriations bill since 1995, but no permanent ban. Taxpayers
receive no rent or royalties for the extraction of minerals on more than approximately 1.3 billion acres
of federal lands. Reported cost savings reflect proposed enactment of a royalty rate of 8 percent for
extraction from existing claims and 12.5 percent for production that has not yet started, as well as a $5-
$10 per acre annual rent on current land claims converted to leases.

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