As reported on Ammoland, a ATF surprise rule change promulgated entirely without warning in a newsletter has reclassified a critical component of smokeless powder as a “high explosive”.
The problem is that there are very strict rules governing the storage and transport of high explosives, and the ammunition supply chain is totally unprepared to suddenly comply with those rules.
Overhauling the ammunition supply chain to accommodate those rules will be a long and expensive process, which would be bad enough news for ammo prices. But the knockout blow is the fact that the industry was given no warning and zero grace period, so they’re just screwed, because as of yesterday they’re now in sudden violation of federal law.
This is not a drill. The Obama administration just implemented a new regulatory change that has sent the entire firearms industry into a tailspin overnight.
A key ingredient necessary for making gunpowder has been re-classified as a high explosive, making it illegal for any company within the industry to transport or store it as they have for decades.
It all stems from how the ATF regulates a chemical compound known as nitrocellulose. For decades, the firearm industry has been allowed to store and transport wetted nitrocellulose without having to treat it as a high explosive. Manufacturers deliberately mix the chemical compound with water to make it less volatile.
Overnight, the ATF just completely changed its regulations, turning everyone in the ammunition industry into felons if they do business the way they have for decades.
The entire industry is now at a standstill. Without nitrocellulose, you can’t make smokeless gunpowder. Without smokeless powder, there’s no ammunition.
This is the real deal. If this regulation stays in place, it will take months for the industry to recover and send ammunition prices through the roof!
There’s nothing “sexy” about ATF regulations pertaining to wetted nitrocellulose. This isn’t going to get any coverage in the media. Start talking to the average American about nitrocellulose and other chemical compounds and their eyes will start to glaze over.
The chemistry isn’t really all that important. This new regulation has ground the entire domestic ammunition manufacturing industry to a halt.
The ATF gave the industry no notice. No grace period. This came down overnight. The entire supply chain for this crucial gunpowder component is now non-compliant.
This isn’t the first time that Obama has gone after ammunition components. Two years ago, the administration shut down the last remaining lead smelter in the United States.
Just a few weeks ago, the administration redefined the term “firearm manufacturer” to include gunsmiths, forcing thousands of small businesses to pay thousands of dollars a year in new fees to the State Department just to be allowed to stay in business.
Obama knows that any grandiose attempt at disarmament will fail. They tried to push gun control through Congress in 2013 and failed miserably. So, they are doing everything they can behind the scenes to attack the firearms industry and gun owners alike.
They just made it impossible to commercially produce gunpowder in the United States. Left unchecked, this regulation will leave gun shop shelves bare. If the industry is able to recover and become compliant, say goodbye to affordable ammunition.
Whether it actually stands or not, the new ATF ruling does provide a nasty preview of what’s to come in a future Democratic administration… so prepare yourselves accordingly. Indeed, I wouldn’t be surprised to see an ATF rule change that basically kills the reloading scene by reclassifying smokeless powder and “ammo manufacturing” in a way that makes reloading either very expensive — as with gunsmithing and the recent ITAR ruling — or outright illegal.
This is the real deal. If Obama isn’t stopped, it’s game over.
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