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FACT SHEET: Copper in Our Every Day Lives

WASHINGTON, D.C., October 25, 2011 - Tomorrow, the House will consider H.R. 1904, legislation that authorizes a fair value land exchange in Southeast Arizona that would open up the third largest undeveloped copper resource in the world. Currently, the United States imports over 30% of its copper needs. H.R. 1904 would create American jobs and strengthen our national security by producing enough copper to meet 25% of our copper demand. Few people probably recognize the vital role copper plays in our lives and the importance of safely and responsibly harnessing it here at home.

Household Items

The last time you used a microwave, refrigerator, dishwasher, or washing machine you were using appliances made with copper. Your home’s plumbing, heating and electrical wiring also contains copper.


The last time you watched television, sent emails on a computer, or made a call on a Smartphone, you were using electronics that depend on copper.

Advanced Medical Technology

If you have ever had a Cat-scan, MRI, or x-ray, you’ve utilized medical technology that has been made possible by copper.

National Defense

Whether in our stealth bombers, nuclear submarines, or sophisticated computers and communications networks, copper can be found in many of the tools our armed forces utilize every day. According to the USGS, copper is the Department of Defense’s second most used material.

Renewable Energy

Copper has also played an integral part in the innovations we’ve forged with renewable energy. Wind turbines, solar panels, hybrid vehicles, and other technologies all require large amounts of copper to generate and transmit renewable energy. For example, a single 3 mega-watt wind turbine contains over 4 tons of copper.


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Contact: Jill Strait, Spencer Pederson or Crystal Feldman 202-226-9019

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