West could end reliance on #Chinese batteries by 2030, says #GoldmanSachs

The US and Europe can cut their dependence on China for electric vehicle batteries through more than $160bn in new capital expenditure by 2030, Goldman Sachs has forecast. EV batteries are one of the core technologies giving rise to concern across western capitals over dependence on China.

Following years of deep state support and a desire by Beijing to cut its own reliance on oil imports, China produces three quarters of the world’s batteries and also dominates production of their materials and components. However, according to a report to clients, seen by the Financial Times, the investment bank’s analysts believe a stark pivot to protectionism in Washington and Brussels, combined with an unprecedented spending spree by non-Chinese companies, have the potential to extricate the west from its reliance on Beijing over the next seven years.

To obtain a self-sufficient supply chain, countries competing with China would need to spend $78.2bn for batteries, $60.4bn in components and $13.5bn in mining of lithium, nickel and cobalt, as well as $12.1bn in refining of those materials, the report calculated. The bank’s analysts believe demand for finished batteries could be met without China within the next three to five years, largely thanks to big investments in the US by South Korean conglomerates LG and SK, who have been attracted by massive subsidies from US taxpayers. LG Chem said on Tuesday it would invest more than $3bn to build a battery cathode factory in Tennessee, the biggest of its kind in the US. Goldman forecasts that the market share of the Korean battery makers in the US will soar to around 55 per cent in three years, from 11 per cent in 2021.

The passage of the Inflation Reduction Act in August means huge tax benefits and other subsidies for localising battery supply chains and fuelling the uptake of EVs. Goldman expects the “average eligible EV in the US” will receive more than $10,000 in benefits from the IRA.

Read more at: https://www.ft.com/content/458ebaf3-c1ee-499c-b7f3-2e5d7f1bb6df

#US, #Philippines to Negotiate Nuclear Power Tech-Sharing Pact

The US and the Philippines will open talks on a deal for the Asian nation to build nuclear power plants with American technology, Vice President Kamala Harris announced.

In a bid to boost the supply chain for critical minerals, the US also will support development of a nickel and cobalt processing facility in the Philippines.

The facility will expand the Philippines’ production of refined nickel and cobalt by 20,000 metric tons per year and enhance sustainable development of those critical minerals, the White House said.

Read more at: https://finance.yahoo.com/news/us-philippines-negotiate-nuclear-power-220000147.html

#Vale inks #Nickel deal with #GM that could be worth $760M a year

Industry giant Vale has landed its first large-scale electric vehicle battery deal in North America, supplying nickel to power a slew of General Motors’ cars and trucks, the companies said on Thursday.

The deal for 25,000 tonnes per year of nickel works out to about $762 million per year using a September average metal spot price of about $30,500 per tonne, though both companies declined to state the agreement’s dollar value in a joint news release. They called it a long-term deal, but didn’t say how many years. 

The nickel is to come from Vale’s proposed plant at Bécancour near Trois-Rivières, Que., a first-of-its-kind facility for Canada and North America, Vale said. It will wind up in electric vehicles such as the Chevrolet Silverado EV, the Cadillac LYRIQ and the GMC HUMMER EV pickup. The supply will outfit about 350,000 electric vehicles per year, the companies said. Nickel deliveries are planned to start in the second half of 2026.

Read more at: https://www.northernminer.com/news/vale-inks-nickel-deal-with-gm-that-could-be-worth-760-million-a-year/1003848685/

U.S. military weighs funding mining projects in #Canada amid rivalry with China

Canadian companies told they qualify under Defense Production Act.

The United States military has been quietly soliciting applications for Canadian mining projects that want American public funding through a major national security initiative.

It’s part of an increasingly urgent priority of the U.S. government lessening dependence on China for critical minerals that are vital in everything from civilian goods such as electronics, cars and batteries, to weapons.

It illustrates how Canadian mining is becoming the nexus of a colossal geopolitical struggle. Ottawa just pushed Chinese state-owned companies out of the sector, and the U.S. is now considering moving public funding in.

Read more at: https://www.cbc.ca/news/world/u-s-military-mining-projects-canada-1.6649522

#Indonesia proposes to #Canada setting up #OPEC-like group for #Nickel

JAKARTA — Indonesia has proposed in talks with Canada establishing an OPEC-like organization for nickel producing countries, the Southeast Asian nation’s investment ministry said in a statement on Wednesday.

Indonesia and Canada are the first and sixth biggest nickel producers in the world, respectively.

The proposal was made when Indonesian Investment Minister Bahlil Lahadalia met Canada’s International Trade Minister Mary Ng on Tuesday on the sideline of the G20 summit in Bali.

Read more at: https://financialpost.com/pmn/business-pmn/indonesia-proposes-to-canada-setting-up-opec-like-group-for-nickel

#Canada orders #Chinese companies to divest stake in #Lithium mines

Canada’s government ordered three Chinese firms to divest from a trio of small lithium miners based in the country, days after introducing tougher rules on foreign investments in the nation’s critical minerals sectors.

Sinomine (Hong Kong) Rare Metals Resources Co. Ltd. is required to divest in Vancouver-based Power Metals Corp., while Chengze Lithium International Ltd. must exit from Calgary-based Lithium Chile Inc. and Zangge Mining Investment (Chengdu) Co. Ltd., was ordered to divest from Ultra Lithium Inc., based in Vancouver, Canada’s federal government said Wednesday in a statement.

Read more at: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-11-02/canada-orders-three-chinese-firms-to-divest-from-country-s-lithium-miners?leadSource=uverify%20wall

The #US Just Can’t Match #China’s Industrial Heft

The American attempt at an industrial policy to build electric vehicles and batteries has, once again, fallen flat. The recently released list of firms selected for $2.8 billion of funding shows as much. They look more like late-stage R&D projects than companies ready to scale.

It’s unclear where the supplies of nickel, lithium and cobalt will come from, or how the US plants will scale up, because most of the investment has been allocated toward yet-to-be fully-proven powerpack technology that’s still not commercially viable. In the meantime, large battery makers have announced big plans — and they too will require supplies. 

Read more at: https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/energy/the-us-just-cant-match-chinas-industrial-heft/2022/10/31/2dfbd4b0-5968-11ed-bc40-b5a130f95ee7_story.html

#Indonesia considers #Opec-style cartel for battery metals

Indonesia is studying the establishment of an Opec-like cartel for nickel and other key battery metals, highlighting the geopolitical confidence of nations that are rich in resources needed to make electric cars.

Indonesia is the world’s largest nickel producer, generating 38 per cent of global refined supply, according to consultancy CRU. It holds a quarter of the world’s reserves of the metal.

Read more at: https://www.ft.com/content/0990f663-19ae-4744-828f-1bd659697468

U.S. must build EV batteries and advanced technologies at home

In August, Congress passed the Inflation Reduction Act, making a historic investment to rebuild industries that the U.S. invented but allowed China and other nations to capture. The legislation includes important production tax credits for critical mineral producers and refiners as well as manufacturers. But more is needed, including permitting reform, to gain energy independence from hostile nations such as China.

Credit Suisse estimates that the legislation’s tax incentives — combined with ensuing private capital investments — may total $1.7 trillion over the next 10 years. Having kicked off this green gold rush, it behooves us to now think about protecting these investments.

A particular threat is China’s domination of the world’s mineral supply chains, thanks to Beijing’s massive subsidies and predatory trade behavior.  World Trade Organization rules have proved fruitless in dissuading Beijing from using its alarming grip on raw materials as a source of geopolitical leverage.

This will undoubtedly affect America’s electric vehicle (EV) ambitions. The building blocks for EVs are still largely imported — even as demand for key battery metals is exploding. It’s predicted that by 2040, the demand for EV inputs of lithium, nickel, graphite and cobalt could increase by a staggering 30 times. Unfortunately, China has already established a stranglehold on these resources, since Beijing controls 70% of the world’s lithium supplies and almost all of the world’s graphite. Especially concerning is China’s control of cobalt mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo that use child labor.

Read more at: https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2022/oct/25/us-must-build-ev-batteries-and-advanced-technologi/

#Vale CEO says iron ore miner will spin-off #Copper, #Nickel unit

The chief executive of Vale SA said on Friday the Brazilian iron ore miner is reconsidering a near-term spin-off of its base metals business and an eventual public listing.

The Brazilian miner had a longstanding plan to sell the unit that was still being considered as recently as 2021.

But rather than selling all or part of it, the company is now looking to separate and ring-fence the copper and nickel unit from the iron ore business as the two have different growth prospects, Eduardo Bartolomeo said at the FT Mining Summit.

Read more at: https://www.reuters.com/markets/commodities/vale-ceo-says-iron-ore-miner-will-spin-off-copper-nickel-unit-2022-10-21/

#Biden hands out first EV battery metals funding

The White House selected 20 U.S. manufacturers and processors across 12 states for some of the first green metals funding from the US$135 billion pool initially approved almost a year ago in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Act.  
 
The U.S. is among countries in the West that want to lessen dependency on China, Russia and other regimes like the Democratic Republic of Congo that control global supplies in key minerals or mineral processing facilities needed for transitions to sustainable energy and widespread modern tech gadgets.

Read more at: https://www.northernminer.com/news/biden-hands-out-first-ev-battery-metals-funding-to-albemarle-piedmont-and-talon-among-others/1003847646/

#America Desperately Needs To Invest More In Battery Recycling

“The need for critical minerals is heightened with a focus on the electrification movement in transportation and will continue to accelerate”.

“Over the next five years, there will be more attention on recycled content and domestic supply.”

The last twelve months proved turbulent for the electrical products market. This is true whether you’re a raw material miner, refiner, manufacturer, or end user. Indeed, ongoing issues with battery metal prices and supply security affected millions. After demand rose dramatically, Chinese battery makers began snapping up resources left and right. This left major automakers scrambling to shore up supply agreements for raw materials and the associated downstream battery supply chains.

Both cost and security of supply have become significant concerns across both commercial and defense industries. In fact, these worries have made it all the way to the White House. As with rare earth metals, the reliance on overseas supply sources leaves the supply chain dangerously exposed.

What’s more, the companies see a closed-loop domestic recycling industry as critical. This is not only for self-sufficiency, but for environmental reasons. Without an adequate recycling industry, electronic components like batteries will only continue to end up in landfills.

House Republican who could lead a key environmental committee – Focused on critical minerals and natural climate solutions

If Republicans regain control of the House in November’s midterm elections, Rep. Bruce Westerman (R-Ark.) would become chair of the Natural Resources Committee, one of the most consequential panels for environmental policy.

Critical minerals, natural climate solutions

Westerman said he thinks two types of environmental legislation could gain broad Republican support: bills focused on critical minerals and natural climate solutions.

Read more at: https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/10/11/meet-house-republican-who-could-lead-key-environmental-committee/

#GM to take equity stake in #Australian mining company

WASHINGTON, Oct 11 (Reuters) – General Motors Co. said on Tuesday it will invest up to $69 million and take an equity stake in Queensland Pacific Metals to secure a new source of nickel and cobalt for battery cells for use in the U.S. automaker’s vehicles.

GM said the investment will help support electric-vehicle eligibility for consumer incentives under new, clean energy U.S. tax credits. GM said the nickel laterite ore is expected to be processed using a new, proprietary process that helps reduce waste.

Read more at: https://www.reuters.com/business/autos-transportation/gm-take-equity-stake-australian-mining-company-2022-10-11/

US government includes Li-ion batteries in list of goods produced by child labor

In the 10th edition of its “List of Goods Produced by Child Labor or Forced Labor,” the US Department of Labor has decided to include lithium-ion batteries among the 158 goods from 77 countries that the department has reason to believe are produced by child labor or forced labor in violation of international standards.

The addition of Li-ion batteries to the list is not due to direct evidence of labor abuses in the final production of this good, but because of the evidence of human exploitation in the mining of cobalt, a key input in the production of the technology.

Read more at: https://www.mining.com/us-government-includes-li-ion-batteries-in-list-of-goods-produced-by-child-labor/

Singapore Exchange (SGX)set to unveil EV metals futures

SINGAPORE: Singapore Exchange (SGX) is set to launch its first lithium and cobalt contracts, adding to efforts by commodity exchanges to get battery materials companies and investors interested in using futures.

SGX is due to kick off trading in two lithium and two cobalt contracts.

The London Metal Exchange (LME) and CME Group Inc already offer futures for both metals, although trading liquidity is still far below established commodities contracts.

Demand for battery minerals is expanding rapidly as the global auto industry accelerates a push toward electric vehicles, triggering big price swings.

A global index of lithium prices has more than quadrupled in the past year, while Chinese lithium carbonate just hit a fresh record last week.

Read more at: https://www.thestar.com.my/business/business-news/2022/09/27/sgx-set-to-unveil————-ev-metals-futures

LG Energy inks #Cobalt, #Lithium supply deals with three #Canadian miners

SEOUL — South Korean battery maker LG Energy Solution said on Friday it has signed agreements on lithium and cobalt sourcing with three Canadian mining firms in a bid to expand its footprint in North America.

The Tesla supplier said in a statement the agreements were part of an effort to expand mid- to long-term supply contracts with companies that mine and process key battery materials in North America.

Read more at: https://financialpost.com/pmn/business-pmn/lg-energy-inks-cobalt-lithium-supply-deals-with-three-canadian-miners

#China May Find It Hard to Cool #Lithium’s Rally This Time Around

Scorching gains for lithium, a raw material vital for powering electric vehicles, threaten to push costs even higher for Chinese battery makers, and the government is finding itself powerless to do anything about it.

Even after a meeting last week where Chinese authorities pleaded with major producers to stabilize prices, lithium carbonate surged to a fresh record, rising to 500,500 yuan ($70,716) a ton. In yuan terms, that exceeds the level prevailing when Tesla Inc.’s Elon Musk called prices “insane” earlier this year.

“In the short term, I don’t think the meeting will help China cool the rally,” said Peng Xu, analyst at BloombergNEF. Prices for seaborne spodumene — a partly processed form of lithium — are increasing amid a supply-demand mismatch and that’s squeezing the margins of Chinese lithium refiners, Xu said, adding there’s still room for further gains from current price levels.

Read more at: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-09-22/china-may-find-it-hard-to-cool-lithium-s-rally-this-time-around

#CBC: Electric car batteries could boost #Glencore’s recycling operations

The growing market for electric vehicle batteries is expected to boost Glencore’s recycling operations in Sudbury, Ont.

The mining giant has been recycling metals at its Sudbury smelter for 32 years. 

Those alloys, which come from things like aircraft engine turbines or even parts from machine shops, are melted down, granulated and shipped to a facility in Norway, where they are separated into their base elements like nickel and cobalt.

Read more at: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/sudbury/battery-recycling-glencore-sudbury-1.6590472

#Bloomberg: #Lithium Resumes Insane Gains to Add Pressure on Automakers

Lithium — the ubiquitous raw material needed in electric vehicle batteries — was trading at insane levels, and China’s authorities in March pushed key industry players to act, prices briefly began to cool. Now, they’re rising again to add pressure on automakers.

Lithium carbonate jumped to a new record Friday of 500,500 yuan ($71,315) a ton in China, according to data from Asian Metal Inc. The battery material has roughly tripled in the past year, and is more than 1,150% higher than a pandemic low touched in July 2020. Prices of lithium hydroxide are also gaining and closing in on an all-time high set in April. 

Read more at: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-09-19/lithium-resumes-insane-gains-to-add-pressure-on-automakers

#Glencore looking to trade #Lithium on soaring EV demand

Mining and commodity giant Glencore  is looking to add lithium to the suite of metals it trades, as the raw material is in hot demand due to the rapidly growing production of electric vehicles (EVs), two sources with knowledge of the matter said.

If it goes ahead, the Switzerland-based company’s trading team would be part of the zinc and copper business run by Jyothish George and Nick Popovic, the sources said.

Glencore declined to comment.

The company does not own lithium mines but produces copper, nickel and cobalt, other raw materials that it terms “commodities of the future,” as they are needed to manufacture batteries, electric cars and renewable infrastructure that will help the world transition to a greener economy.

Read more at: https://www.reuters.com/markets/europe/glencore-looking-trade-lithium-soaring-ev-demand-sources-2022-09-16/

Industrial users flee LME nickel, deepening market fissures

LONDON, Sept 14 (Reuters) – The London Metal Exchange faces a struggle to regain its dominant position in global nickel trading as volumes slide and participants flee an increasingly volatile market in the wake of trade mayhem earlier this year.

Nickel volumes on the world’s oldest and largest venue for trading metals collapsed after the LME suspended its contract for a week and cancelled all trades on March 8, when prices doubled in a few hours to a record above $100,000 a tonne.

LME data shows many participants have abandoned the nickel market, a trend several traders say looks set to continue leading to even lower volumes and more volatility as more people opt to negotiate prices directly.

Average daily volumes of nickel traded on the LME plunged 50% last month to 203,856 tonnes from the same period last year. This follows drops of 28%, 35%, 25% and 42% in April, May, June and July respectively.

Read more at: Analysis: Industrial users flee LME nickel, deepening market fissures | Reuters

#Shanghai’s #Nickel twist risks more market fracture

LONDON, Sept 12 (Reuters) – The London Metal Exchange’s (LME) controversial suspension of its nickel contract in March didn’t just impact trading in London.

In the immediate aftermath of the LME intervention, the Shanghai Futures Exchange (ShFE) was forced to suspend its nickel contract for two days and has arguably suffered even greater damage.

LME nickel volumes have unsurprisingly slumped since March with activity in August down 47% on the same month last year. But ShFE nickel volumes have fallen harder, collapsing 74% year-on-year in August and dropping by 70% over the first eight months of 2022.

Nickel activity in Shanghai is now back at levels last seen in 2015 when the contract was first launched.

ShFE’s response is to broaden the range of physical nickel that can be delivered against its contract to include briquettes.

The move would help address the Shanghai contract’s persistent problem of super-low inventory and align it more closely with the LME product.

But it also risks stimulating competition for LME stocks, which are overwhelmingly in the form of briquettes and already low.

The root problem is that both exchanges are competing for physical liquidity in what is a shrinking part of the global nickel supply chain.

ShFE first mooted the idea of including briquettes against its contract in 2020. It’s a form of nickel that has become more widely traded in China in recent years, largely because it’s a popular choice for electric vehicle battery makers.

This year’s market meltdown appears to have given the proposal fresh impetus.

It’s easy to forget that the short squeeze that caused the London March mayhem was foreshadowed by rolling tightness in Shanghai over the second half of last year.

Indeed, the resulting import-friendly arbitrage accentuated a run on LME stocks, laying the foundations for the price explosion that rocked the market in early March.

Persistent tightness in the Shanghai market is a function of chronically low exchange inventory. It fell below the 10,000-tonne level in April last year and hasn’t recovered since, currently standing at a meagre 3,523 tonnes.

Physical liquidity on the Shanghai contract is constricted by the fact that it only allows for delivery of full-plate nickel cathode with a limited number of registered brands.

Other than China’s domestic producers, only Russia’s Norilsk Nickel and Glencore’s Norwegian Nikkelverk brands are accepted.

Extending the delivery criteria to include briquettes looks like an easy win-win of making the contract more useful for domestic battery-nickel players and attracting more physical units to ShFE warehouses.

The only problem is where that extra metal might come from.

China doesn’t produce much high-purity Class I nickel, most of the country’s production taking the form of nickel pig iron for the stainless steel sector.

Briquettes have to be imported from Australia, Madagascar and Canada or from the LME warehouse system, where briquettes account for 87% of registered nickel stocks.

History provides a warning of what might happen if ShFE changes its delivery criteria.

Low stocks liquidity plagued the Shanghai nickel market from its launch in April 2015. Faced with the prospect of an immediate squeeze on its new contract, ShFE included Norilsk Nickel full-plate metal as a delivery option from June of that year.

In doing so, it generated a tectonic movement of Norilsk-brand nickel from LME warehouses into China.

LME warehouses held over 267,000 tonnes of full-plate nickel, accounting for 57% of total registered inventory, at the start of June 2015. By the end of 2017 that stockpile had dwindled to 71,340 tonnes, representing just 19% of registered nickel stocks.

China’s imports of refined nickel hit what remains an all-time record high of 371,000 tonnes in 2016, including 228,000 tonnes of Russian origin metal

ShFE nickel stocks rose from 10,000 tonnes in the middle of 2015 to what also is still an all-time high of 112,000 tonnes in September 2016. Since then the mountain has dwindled to next to nothing.

A similar shift in briquettes inventory can’t be ruled out, although there is simply not enough metal around to generate the volumes seen in the 2016 migration of full-plate cathode.

LME nickel stocks fell by 147,000 tonnes last year and they have halved again so far this year to 53,532 tonnes.

Although accentuated by the flow of refined metal to China in the closing months of 2021, the underlying demand for LME stocks has been coming from the battery sector.

The world is building ever more gigafactories and most of them need refined nickel to feed into the metallurgical mix.

Availability of refined nickel is challenged and that of briquette even more so.

Remaining physical stocks risk being split across two trading venues, disrupting rather than enhancing pricing.

The core issue facing both exchanges is that Class I refined nickel only accounts for around half of global production and the ratio is falling all the time as Indonesia builds ever more nickel matte capacity.

Tsingshan Group, which found itself at the centre of the March storm, is a massive nickel producer but none of its output is in a refined form that could be delivered against either the London or Shanghai market. With no option of delivering physically against its short position, its massive exposure could only be resolved at eye-watering financial cost.

The limitations on what sort of nickel can be traded on the London market played a key part in the market blow-up of 1988 when the LME also briefly suspended trading.

The problem was well understood even then but no-one could agree on what would constitute a benchmark specification for a product as chemically variable as ferronickel.

It remains to be seen whether the LME or ShFE can find a pricing solution to what is an increasingly diverse product spectrum, which now includes a fast-growing stream of nickel sulphate.

Competing for a declining slice of the physical market may not be the answer.

Read more at: Column: Shanghai’s nickel twist risks more market fracture | Reuters

Can #Indonesia’s electric car, battery sector have a smooth ride beyond #China?

  • US offers tax rebate for EV buyers whose vehicles’ batteries use minimal metal from ‘foreign entities of concern’, in reference to China, Russia firms
  • A lot of nickel, used for EV batteries, is from Indonesia, but experts say sector must become greener to gain more global market share.

A new regulation in the United States offering incentives to buyers of electric vehicles with battery components only minimally made by “foreign entities of concern” has paved the way for Indonesia to expand its burgeoning EV battery industry beyond the Chinese market.

However, the nation’s lacklustre green energy revolution may dampen that prospect in the future, analysts said.

The US Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), passed into law last month, offers a tax rebate of US$7,500 for EV consumers whose vehicles undergo final assembly in North America, and if their batteries use minimal metal components from “foreign entities of concern”, in a veiled reference to Chinese and Russian companies.

At least 40 per cent of the important metals in the EV battery, including lithium, nickel, cobalt and manganese, must also come from the US and its Free Trade Agreement partners. That percentage will rise to 80 per cent by 2026, according to Reuters. The new law will be effective until at least 2032.

There will be implications for Indonesia, “directly or indirectly, considering that China-made batteries imported by the US use Indonesian nickel”, said Putra Adhiguna, a Jakarta-based energy analyst in the transport sector at the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis. “But at this point in time, it’s unclear what the magnitude of that implication will be.”

While currently the largest markets for EV batteries are China and the European Union, “the Chinese market is still twice or three times bigger than the US market now,” Putra said.

But, Putra said that in the future, the US will be a “significant market” for nickel producers.

“The US is a significant growth market, so if they block products from China, and implement additional measures such as the IRA, our nickel industry’s future growth will feel the impact of the US’ drive to localise the EV supply chain.”

Read more at: Can Indonesia’s electric car, battery sector have a smooth ride beyond China? | South China Morning Post (scmp.com)

New cathode design solves major barrier to better lithium-ion batteries

Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory have a long history of breakthrough discoveries with lithium-ion batteries. Many of these discoveries have focused on a battery cathode known as NMC, a nickel-manganese-cobalt oxide. Batteries with this cathode now power the Chevy Bolt.

The team at Argonne National Laboratory developed a method for producing boundary-free single crystals. Testing of small cells with such single-crystal cathodes at very high voltage showed a 25% increase in energy storage per unit volume, with almost no loss of performance over 100 cycles of testing. By contrast, over the same cycle life, the capacity declined by 60% to 88% in NMC cathodes composed of single crystals with many internal boundaries or with coated polycrystals.

“We now have guidelines that battery manufacturers can use to prepare cathode material that is boundary free and works at high voltage,” said Khalil Amine, an Argonne Distinguished Fellow. ​“And the guidelines should apply to other cathode materials besides NMC.”

Read more at: New cathode design solves major barrier to better lithium-ion batteries | Argonne National Laboratory (anl.gov)

F-35 Deliveries Halted Over a Chinese #Cobalt and #Samarium Alloy, #Pentagon Says

The Pentagon has halted deliveries of Lockheed Martin Corp.’s F-35 after finding an alloy used in magnets for pumps on the fighter jet was made in China.

“Once the issue was discovered,” the F-35 program office “found an alternative source for the alloy that will be used in future turbomachines,” Goemaere said, and deliveries of F-35s were halted as a precaution. 

Lockheed said in a statement that “we are working with our partners and DoD to ensure contractual compliance within the supply chain.” The contractor said the F-35 remains safe for flight, “and we are working with the DoD to resolve the issue as quickly as possible to resume deliveries.”

Read more at: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-09-07/f-35-deliveries-halted-over-use-of-chinese-alloy-pentagon-says-l7rsjt36

Agreement with #German automakers ‘unprecedented’ for #Canada, says auto industry insider

Memorandums of understanding the federal government signed with two of Europe’s largest automakers are unprecedented, according to the president of Canada’s Automotive Parts Manufacturers’ Association.

On Tuesday the federal government announced it reached agreements with Volkswagen and Mercedes-Benz that would help the German automakers secure access to the critical minerals needed for electric vehicle batteries.

Those critical minerals – such as lithium, nickel, cobalt and graphite – are primarily found in parts of northern Ontario and northern Quebec. 

“It is absolutely unprecedented,” said Flavio Volpe, president of the Automotive Parts Manufacturers’ Association. 

He said the agreements with both companies sends a signal to other car manufacturers that northern Ontario and northern Quebec are the places to access critical minerals if they want to qualify for new electric vehicle tax credits in the U.S.

To qualify for the new tax credits in the U.S. – which are worth up to $7,500 for electrical vehicle buyers – automakers must manufacture their vehicles in North America, and source most of their critical minerals and battery materials from countries that have a free-trade agreement with the U.S.

Read more at: Agreement with German automakers ‘unprecedented’ for Canada, says auto industry insider | CBC News

Shiny EVs in Sight, #Indonesia Mulls #Nickel Export Tax

Indonesia could impose a tax on nickel exports this year as Southeast Asia’s largest economy looks to be a bigger player in the electric vehicle industry.

The biggest producer of the EV battery metal, which is also used to make stainless steel, Indonesia is looking to add more value locally in a bid to boost revenues and jobs, President Joko Widodo told Bloomberg Editor-in-Chief John Micklethwait in a wide-ranging interview in Jakarta.

The potential move, which was flagged earlier this year by another official, is one step on a path that could ultimately mean a ban on exports of all raw materials. The more certain levy in the near future is a carbon tax before the end of the year, the plans for which the president confirmed as the country shoots for carbon neutrality by 2060.

Read more at: What’s Happening in the World Economy: Indonesia’s Export Tax Plan – Bloomberg

Inflation Reduction Act: Sourcing materials and making batteries are challenging

With the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) — the most significant climate change policy passed in our country to date — engineers, like myself, are at the center of developing and deploying the clean energy technology in record time. Importantly, these technologies include the batteries for electric vehicles (EVs), a centerpiece of the legislation and long-time foundation of strategies to reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions. The IRA lays out some tough — and dramatic — engineering challenges for EV batteries.

It is far easier to buy a battery made abroad. We can’t change this reality without engineers as the heroes in what will be a dramatic build out of battery manufacturing in the United States.  

Potentially even more challenging than building the facilities that assemble battery parts is acquiring all the materials they contain. Metals — including lithium, copper, manganese, nickel and cobalt — are a key part of what makes a battery work.

However, the U.S. is not a dominant producer of any of these metals. And, typically, countries that produce metals don’t manufacture battery components or batteries at all. A common example is Chile, which produces 25 percent of the world’s lithium, but no appreciable number of batteries. About 70 percent of our cobalt comes from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), and 15 to 20 percent of that is mined by hand. This cobalt is generally exported to China, where it is used in battery production.

Recognizing the supply chain risks that such an international supply chain entails, the IRA sets targets for the percentage of the value of critical materials in a battery that come in total from domestic mines recycling, or from countries with which the U.S. has a free-trade agreement. This target hits 80 percent in four years. Given that most batteries are assembled outside the U.S., the amount of U.S.-mined metals incorporated in batteries today is incredibly small. To increase this percentage so dramatically in the next four years, advances in recycling existing lithium-ion batteries is key.

Subject to intense research and development, this technology is very young and not operated yet on a large scale in the U.S. Previous research has estimated that accomplishing a target of about 8 percent lithium and 12 percent each of nickel and cobalt by 2030 would be possible. By mass, this is only about one-third of the critical materials in a battery that would be achieved in eight (not four) years. Again, engineers must come to the rescue to design and scale these processes.

Read more at: Inflation Reduction Act: Sourcing materials and making batteries are challenging (msn.com)

Who Says #China Has Locked in the EV Supply Chain?

This latest chemistry, LMFP, and promise to commercialize it, could be yet another game changer.In its latest formulation, manganese will boost the energy density of LFPs, allowing them to take vehicles further along (while remaining the safer and cheaper option.)  In CATL’s case, the voltage will increase from 3.2 volts to 4.1 volts. Such chemistry could provide up to 25% more energy density, according to a subsidiary of Lithium Australia that has also been working to adjust its own manufacturing processes to boost battery performance. CATL’s cells will be mass produced by the end of this year with a potential energy density of 230 Wh/kg, compared to 150Wh/kg to 180Wh/kg. That’s substantial given range anxiety and charging infrastructure remain the biggest barriers to widespread consumer adoption.

Manganese — and its effectiveness in electrochemistry — is often forgotten because of its low cost as a portion of the whole battery compared to that of other metals like nickel and cobalt. It’s used in higher energy density batteries, or the nickel cobalt formulation but in smaller amounts than the other elements. Those powerpacks, while also popular and a favorite of South Korean manufacturers, have been involved in fires and aren’t considered as stable despite being able to take vehicles further. Other combinations exist too, like the increasingly promising lithium nickel manganese oxide, or LNMO. In the past, one persistent issue with using manganese was that the battery would have a limited life cycle and high resistance, meaning it gets too hot and voltage drops. CATL’s version (and others) seem to have overcome this. 

 India, for instance, could become a key supply chain risk mitigator. It has vast untapped reserves. Of the more than 140 or so mines, several are currently inactive and almost half the production comes from two dozen public sector mines. Most of the ore is suitable for steel and other more basic uses. Only a tiny portion is battery-grade, however it can be processed and purified in to a battery-friendly form. An Indian government committee last month recommended exploring manganese reserves and boosting R&D efforts to explore the use of the metal for powerpacks, hopefully leading to increased policy support. Putting all this to work effectively could give India a spot in the global supply chain.

Read more at: Who Says China Has Locked in the EV Supply Chain? – The Washington Post

NGOs ask Musk to not invest in Indonesia’s nickel industry over environmental worries

July 25 (Reuters) – Dozens of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have sent an open letter to Elon Musk, urging the Tesla Inc’s chief to not invest in Indonesia’s nickel industry on environmental concerns.

The letter by the NGOs, including Wahana Lingkungan Hidup Indonesia (WALHI) and Friends of the Earth United States, follows Indonesian President Joko Widodo’s meeting with Musk in Texas in May to discuss potential investments.

Indonesia has the world’s biggest nickel reserves and Widodo is keen to develop a nickel-based EV industry at home. The government banned export of unprocessed nickel ore from 2020 to ensure supply for investors.

However, environmentalists are concerned that the process would involve disposing off mining waste into the ocean.

The NGOs said in the letter that environmental damage results from the total area of the forest converted to nickel mining, causing increased deforestation and the threats of polluted water in the river, lake, and the beach.

Read more at: NGOs ask Musk to not invest in Indonesia’s nickel industry over environmental worries | Reuters

#Reuters: #UK launches data centre for critical minerals

Britain on Monday launched a centre to gather data and analyse information on the supply of critical minerals such as cobalt and lithium, key for electric vehicle (EV) batteries.

The centre, to be run by the British Geological Survey, will use the data to help to find ways to source minerals needed for green technologies such as EVs and wind turbines, national defence and mobile phones.

“As the world shifts towards new green technologies, supply chains will become more competitive,” minister for industry Lee Rowley said in a statement.

The first major work of the new Critical Minerals Intelligence Centre will be a study into future demand for and supply of minerals needed for EV batteries.

Britain aims to establish an EV industry but risks falling behind if it cannot build more battery factories.

A Critical Minerals Strategy for Britain will be published later this year, the statement said.

Read more at: UK launches data centre for critical minerals | Reuters

South China Mining Post: #US-led rare earths pact satisfies #SouthKorea’s ‘definite need’ to cut #China dependency.

South Korea has its own rare earth reserves, but does not possess the relevant production capabilities – although in recent years it has moved to produce rare earth magnets.

South Korea’s decision to join a US-led pact on mineral supply helps satisfy a “definite need” to cut dependency on China for key resources, including rare earths, analysts said.

Securing key resources has become a core task for major economies around the world, as minerals are a crucial element incorporated into cutting-edge technologies, green energy and national defence industries.

Countries have traditionally relied on China as it not only holds the largest amount of rare earth reserves, but it also is the world’s biggest producer.

But China’s recent moves to regulate the mining and exports of rare earths has had economies scrambling to secure alternative supplies, with the US-led Minerals Security Partnership launched earlier this month.

Read more at: US-led rare earths pact satisfies South Korea’s ‘definite need’ to cut China dependency | South China Morning Post (scmp.com)

One of World’s Biggest #Cobalt Mines Is at Stake in #Congo Fight

A dispute over one of the biggest copper and cobalt mines is escalating in the Democratic Republic of Congo, threatening to disrupt exports of essential battery materials and raising questions about the project’s future.

A top executive from state mining company Gecamines said that partner CMOC Group Ltd. owes $7.6 billion in overdue payments, and even accused the Chinese metals producer and trader of posing a threat to national security. CMOC said it denies the allegations, “strongly” opposes what it views as unjustified attacks and will defend its rights and interests.

Read more at: One of World’s Biggest Cobalt Mines Is at Stake in Congo Fight – Bloomberg

#Yellen urges less dependence on other nations for key supplies during #Canada trip

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said the U.S. should work on shifting its dependence away from some rival nations for supplies of critical inputs as global supply-chain logjams have hurt the domestic economy.

Canada is a potential source of some products that countries have for many years obtained from China and Russia, Freeland said.

“What we can really contribute in a world of friend-shoring is critical metals and minerals and energy,” she said.

The U.S. already imports many minerals from Canada, including cobalt, nickel, aluminum and graphite. Freeland pointed out her government has earmarked $3.8 billion in its federal budget to implement a new critical minerals strategy over eight years.

Read more at: https://financialpost.com/news/economy/yellen-urges-less-dependence-on-other-nations-for-key-supplies

#TheWashingtonPost: How a Battery Metals Squeeze Puts EV Future at Risk

The world’s epic shift into electric vehicles needs to overcome a major obstacle: how to meet rocketing demand for batteries, the vital component, while cutting the cost to help the cars go mainstream. Factory lines churning out power packs to fuel a clean energy future are being built faster than strained supply chains can keep up. A global rush to lock in stocks of lithium, nickel, cobalt and other key ingredients from a handful of nations has sent prices hurtling higher.

There are major concerns over China’s industry-wide dominance and moves in some other countries to restrict mineral exports in hopes of building their own manufacturing base. It’s a scenario that risks slowing the pace of EV adoption.

1. Why the shortages? 

2. What’s the fallout? 

3. Which minerals are in focus?

4. How will this affect the EV transition?

How a Battery Metals Squeeze Puts EV Future at Risk – The Washington Post

#Bloomberg: #Nickel Royalty Helps #Burundi Boost Its Spending Plan by 40%

https://burundi-agnews.org/economie/burundi-le-canadien-cvmr-investit-40-millions-usd-pour-le-nickel/

Burundi plans to increase its national budget by almost 40% for the fiscal year starting July as it eyes revenue from a nickel concession it awarded to a new partner.

Burundi, which has an estimated 6% of the world’s known nickel deposits, awarded a mining concession to East African Regional Projects. The deal involves remitting $1.5 billion to the government annually, with the first $500 million expected soon. 

The government plans to increase investment in farming and infrastructure, including starting to build a railroad to neighboring Tanzania, according to the statement.

The nation’s economy may grow by 3.6% this year and 4.6% in 2023, according International Monetary Fund estimates. 

Read more at: Nickel Royalty Helps Burundi Boost Its Spending Plan by 40% – Bloomberg

#VW CEO Follows #GM’s Lead, Aims To Overtake #Tesla’s Sales By 2025

Multiple automakers are aiming for Tesla, but supply chain issues are making it difficult to forecast what lies ahead.

Volkswagen Group CEO Herbert Diess appeared on CNBC’s “Squawk Box Europe” this week at the World Economic Forum in Switzerland. He noted that VW still plans to catch up and potentially overtake Tesla on EV sales by 2025.

Tesla is the global leader when it comes to electric cars, and it’s growing rapidly, even amid factory shutdowns and supply chain constraints. Diess shared that once the supply chain issues are resolved, it should help Volkswagen to start ramping up momentum once again.

Read more at: VW CEO Follows GM’s Lead, Aims To Overtake Tesla’s Sales By 2025 (msn.com)

SMM Analysis: #Lithium Battery Recycling Has Broad Prospects and Waste Lithium Batteries Have Become “Sought-After” Products in New Energy Industry

SHANGHAI, May 18 (SMM) – Since the second half of 2021, the prices of upstream raw materials in the power battery industry chain have risen steadily, and the prices of raw materials such as lithium carbonate, cobalt sulphate, and nickel sulphate have soared by nearly 10 times. Waste lithium batteries and battery scrap generated in production process contain nickel, cobalt, and lithium metal, allowing their prices to sky-rocket when the supply of raw materials is tight.

Here is a brief introduction to the pricing method of waste lithium batteries. Taking the most popular waste NMC lithium battery in the recycling market as an example. The recycling price = (SMM refined nickel price × nickel content % + SMM refined cobalt price × cobalt content %) × discount coefficient %. From this formula, it can be seen that in addition to the price fluctuations of refined nickel and refined cobalt, which can directly affect the final recycling price of used lithium batteries, the spot prices and price trends of lithium carbonate, cobalt sulphate, and nickel sulphate will also affect the discount coefficient, thereby affecting the recycling prices. Although lithium is not directly priced in the pricing scheme, the price of lithium carbonate and the relationship between supply and demand will also affect the change in the “discount coefficient %” in the formula.

At present, due to the scarcity of nickel-cobalt-lithium primary resources, insufficient domestic supply, and dependence on imports, the price of battery cathode raw materials has skyrocketed. Many new energy companies have turned their attention to waste power batteries which have the reputation of being called “urban mines”. The discount coefficient of waste NMC lithium battery soared to 150% at the beginning of the year. At present, due to the weakening of domestic new energy market demand, the price of waste lithium batteries has also returned to a more rational range.

Read more at: https://news.metal.com/newscontent/101835021/SMM-Analysis:-Lithium-Battery-Recycling-Has-Broad-Prospects-and-Waste-Lithium-Batteries-Have-Become-%22Sought-After%22-Products-in-New-Energy-Industry/

Four countries to pledge tenfold rise in EU offshore wind power capacity

COPENHAGEN, May 18 (Reuters) – Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands and Denmark will on Wednesday sign a pledge to build at least 150 gigawatts (GW) of offshore wind capacity in the North Sea by 2050, enough to power 230 million European homes,said the Danish energy ministry.

This would be an almost tenfold increase in the European Union’s offshore wind capacity, and the promise comes as the bloc tries to wean itself of planet-warming fossil fuels and its dependency on Russian energy.

Read more at: Four countries to pledge tenfold rise in EU offshore wind power capacity | Reuters

Elon Musk Misses the Big Picture on Lithium Mining

Lack of investment in refining technologies, and companies have been put at a disadvantage. They’re now gearing up to deal with surging raw material demand — much sooner than they expected — and supply chain snarls. But the methods and processes haven’t fully evolved.

Elon Musk has a suggestion for entrepreneurs: Get into lithium mining for juicy margins. It’s a pithy recommendation, but it fails to grasp the complicated challenges for producing more of the metal.

Soaring lithium prices have dampened the excitement around electric vehicles. Musk noted that the production of the white metal was the biggest “limiting factor” for EVs. That may be true — along with all the other battery supply chain bottlenecks — but just mining more lithium or buying a mine isn’t the solution.

As the gap widens between supply and demand for the metal, prices have been rising for everything from the ore of lithium, spodumene, to lithium carbonate and a more refined form, lithium hydroxide. Mexico has nationalized lithium production, and Chile, home to some of the largest mines in the world, is moving closer to doing so as well. China is keeping a tight lid on prices and pushing them down to ensure its companies don’t suffer setbacks. The US is trying to find ways to expand lithium supply.

Yet no solutions to close the gap — and make widespread adoption of EVs a reality — are readily emerging. Part of that is because mining, more broadly, has acquired a bad reputation over the years and was dumped in the non-ESG investor bucket. That meant a lack of investment in refining technologies, and companies have been put at a disadvantage. They’re now gearing up to deal with surging raw material demand — much sooner than they expected — and supply chain snarls. But the methods and processes haven’t fully evolved.

Read more at: https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/energy/elon-musk-misses-the-big-picture-on-lithium-mining/2022/05/16/b95193cc-d56c-11ec-be17-286164974c54_story.html

Supply chains endanger #American security. Here’s what #Biden is doing.

In late February, as most people were focusing on the war in Ukraine, the White House published over 1,300 pages of reports from a year-long and unprecedented investigation into the economic vulnerabilities caused by global supply chains.

These reports received almost no press attention. Yet they shed light on one of the crucial side effects of the war in Ukraine. Decoupling the economies of the United States and its allies from the economies of authoritarian nations may cause massive disruption.

Shortly after coming into office, the Biden-Harris administration issued an executive order on “America’s Supply Chains.” Seven federal agencies were directed to undertake comprehensive studies of the national and international economic organization of supply chains for strategic minerals, pharmaceuticals, semiconductors and batteries within 100 days. The administration also told the government departments to report back within a year about how those industries related to broader “industrial bases” for defense, green energy, public health, information technology, transportation and food.

The reports call for green industrial policy

The U.S. government reports argue that these critical dependencies could be reduced by an ambitious green industrial policy. By 2030, the U.S. agencies are targeting goals that 50 percent of vehicles sold in the United States will be electric, 30 gigawatts of offshore wind will be built in the United States (that’s about four times the annual energy use of New York City), battery storage costs will be reduced by 90 percent, production costs for green hydrogen (made from water and electricity) will be lower than fossil fuel-derived hydrogen, and 90 percent of the key mineral iridium will be recycled. The agencies recommend strengthening the federal government’s “Buy American” program, subsidizing green industries through the Defense Production Act and building stockpiles of clean energy like the United States has for petroleum, along with other measures.

Read more at: https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/05/17/us-supply-chain-security-national-defense/

#Reuters: #Pentagon asks #Congress to fund mining projects in #Australia, #UK

The U.S. Department of Defense has asked Congress to let it fund facilities in the United Kingdom and Australia that process strategic minerals used to make electric vehicles and weapons, calling the proposal crucial to national defense.

The request to alter the Cold War-era Defense Production Act (DPA) came as part of the Pentagon’s recommendations to Congress for how to write the upcoming U.S. military funding bill, known as the National Defense Authorization Act.

Read more at: https://www.reuters.com/markets/commodities/pentagon-asks-congress-fund-mining-projects-australia-uk-2022-05-11/

The Metals Company deep-water tests polymetallic nodule collector vehicle in Atlantic

The Metals Company, an explorer of lower-impact battery metals from seafloor polymetallic nodules, announced Tuesday it has completed initial deep-water trials of the polymetallic nodule collector vehicle in the Atlantic Ocean.

Mining international waters is in the spotlight as companies and countries are looking at minerals concentrated on the ocean floor that can be used in batteries for smart phones and electric vehicles. Last year, TMC said the nodule resource is now estimated at four megatons (Mt) measured, 341Mt indicated and 11Mt inferred mineral resources.

The Vancouver-based company said engineers successfully lowered the Allseas-designed collector vehicle to the seafloor at depths of 2,470 meters, marking the first time the vehicle had been subjected to ultra-deep-water temperatures and pressures. The company said engineers then subjected the vehicle to extensive testing of its various pumps and critical mobility functions, driving 1,018 meters across the seafloor.

Read more at: The Metals Company deep-water tests polymetallic nodule collector vehicle in Atlantic – MINING.COM

#Nickel, #Graphite make up half #Tesla’s battery emissions

According to the Tesla’s so-called Impact Report released on Friday, nickel is by far the biggest problem in its supply chain for batteries when it comes to emissions, outpacing CO2 created by cathode manufacture and cell assembly combined. 

Tesla said it commissioned London-based consulting and software firm Minviro “to identify hotspots with high global warming potential across eight specific processing routes from which we currently source cobalt, nickel and lithium.”

The report says Tesla sources over 95% of its lithium, 50% of its cobalt and 30% of its nickel directly and that “key drivers of CO2 in its global supply chain are the cathode and anode supply chains.” 

Cobalt represents only 1%, while lithium, responsible for 13%, makes a more modest contribution than anode material graphite with the company pointing out that “chemical processing (refining / smelting) was a larger driver than mining.”

GRAPH: Nickel, graphite make up half Tesla’s battery emissions – MINING.COM

#BBC – Mine e-waste, not the Earth, say scientists

New research by the RSC also revealed a growing demand from consumers for more sustainable technology. In an online survey of 10,000 people across 10 countries, 60% said they would be more likely to switch to a rival of their preferred tech brand if they knew the product was made in a sustainable way.

The survey also suggested that people did not know how to deal with their own e-waste. Many respondents said they worried about the environmental effect of unused devices they have in their homes, but did not know what to do with them or were concerned about the security of recycling schemes.

Elements in smartphones that could run out in the next century:

  • Gallium: Used in medical thermometers, LEDs, solar panels, telescopes and has possible anti-cancer properties
  • Arsenic: Used in fireworks, as a wood preserver
  • Silver: Used in mirrors, reactive lenses that darken in sunlight, antibacterial clothing and gloves for use with touch screens
  • Indium: Used in transistors, microchips, fire-sprinkler systems, as a coating for ball-bearings in Formula One cars and solar panels
  • Yttrium: Used in white LED lights, camera lenses and can be used to treat some cancers
  • Tantalum: Used in surgical implants, electrodes for neon lights, turbine blades, rocket nozzles and nose caps for supersonic aircraft, hearing aids and pacemakers.

Read more at: https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-61350996

#Vale signs deal with #Tesla for #Canadian #Nickel

Brazilian miner Vale SA said on Friday it has signed a long-term deal with Tesla Inc to supply the U.S.-based electric vehicle maker with nickel from its Canadian operations.

Vale did not provide financial details on the deal and did not say how long it will last.

“We are pleased to have the leading electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla among our customers,” Deshnee Naidoo, Vale’s executive vice president of Base Metals, said in a release. “This agreement reflects a shared commitment to sustainability and shows very clearly we are the supplier-of-choice for low-carbon and high purity nickel products essential for long-range batteries.”

The Brazilian miner said in a securities filing that the agreement involves supplying Tesla with low-carbon Class 1 nickel and is in line with its strategy of increasing its exposure to the electric vehicle industry.

Read more at: Vale signs deal with Tesla for Canadian nickel | The Daily Press (timminspress.com)

#Canada in ‘active discussions’ with EV supply chain companies – Minister

OTTAWA, May 4 (Reuters) – Canada is talking to a number of companies interested in setting up production in the electric vehicle (EV) supply chain, the industry minister said, as the government seeks to cut carbon emissions to net zero by 2050 and play a role in the shift toward greener cars.

There are “very active discussions with a number of players” to develop an EV supply chain, Industry Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne said in an interview last week.

Canada is urging critical minerals producers and processors to scale up production. It has invested in EV projects through a multi-billion dollar fund set up in 2020, and last month pledged C$3.8 billion ($3 billion) over eight years to help boost the production and processing of critical minerals used for EVs.

Read more at: Canada in ‘active discussions’ with EV supply chain companies – minister | Reuters

#Mexico seeks #Lithium association with #Argentina, #Bolivia and #Chile

Mexico is working with governments of Argentina, Bolivia and Chile to create a lithium association so the countries can share their expertise to exploit the battery mineral, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said on Tuesday.

“We’re going to work. We’re already doing so together on development, on exploration, processing, new technologies,” Lopez Obrador told a regular news conference.

Bolivia, Chile and Argentina sit atop the so-called “lithium triangle,” a region containing nearly 56% of the world’s resources of the metal, according to the most recent figures from the United States Geological Survey (USGS).

Read more at: Mexico seeks lithium association with Argentina, Bolivia and Chile | Financial Post

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