Can Kentucky hatch a clean energy plan to incubate its aluminum boom? – by Annie Sartor (Energy News Network – June 25, 2024)


A lack of affordable renewable energy jeopardizes a clean aluminum facility slated for Kentucky, which the U.S. needs to scale up clean energy manufacturing.

The clean energy revolution faces a critical bottleneck: a paradox with aluminum. This lightweight metal forms the backbone of electric vehicles, wind turbines, and solar panels, but its production demands substantial clean energy capacity. In order to reduce our overreliance on carbon intensive imports, we need to establish a clean domestic supply chain.

By 2035, the U.S. will require more aluminum for clean energy applications than is currently consumed across all sectors combined. To break free of the paradox, the U.S. needs a robust domestic aluminum industry powered by clean energy — a seemingly impossible task without significant investment in both.

Thanks to recent investments by the Biden administration, we have a shot at bringing billions in economic activity back to America. Right now, U.S. manufacturing giant Century Aluminum is in the process of planning a brand-new aluminum facility projected to double the size of the entire primary aluminum industry in the U.S.

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