US increases production to catch China in global battery race – by SHARON UDASIN, ZACK BUDRYK AND CAITLIN MCLEAN (The Hill – June 9, 2022)

As battery-powered electric vehicles become a mainstay on the nation’s highways — and a key piece of President Biden’s environmental policy — the U.S. is facing a formidable challenge in its efforts to compete in the global battery race.

“The problem is, we’re just pretty far behind here,” Ethan Elkind, director of the climate program at Berkeley Law’s Center for Law, Energy & the Environment, told The Hill.“We should have been planning for this a decade ago,” he added. “But I think we can get things moving, now that there’s bipartisan support for it.”

Some of that support was evident in November’s passage of the bipartisan infrastructure bill, which allocated $7.5 billion toward a national network of electric vehicle (EV) chargers — and followed the Biden administration’s August declaration that half of new cars sold in the U.S. would be zero-emission by 2030.

Just last month, the U.S. Department of Energy announced that it would be allocating $3.16 billion in funding from the infrastructure bill to produce more batteries and associated components in America, while bolstering related supply chains.

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