What the energy transition may bring for five battery metals – report – by Valentina Ruiz Leotaud (Northern Miner – October 18, 2021)

Global mining news

ING Economics has published a new report in which its experts predict what the energy transition might bring for five key metals: copper, aluminum, nickel, cobalt, and lithium.

Taking into consideration where different regions of the world stand when it comes to moving towards a low-carbon future where global warming is limited to 2 degrees Celsius, ING’s analysts developed three scenarios that they used as a background to assess the possible performance of battery metals.

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Global shortage of magnesium to cripple car industry – by Cecilla Jamasmie (Mining.com – October 19, 2021)

https://www.mining.com/

The world’s top automakers face disruption from tight global supplies of magnesium, as China’s power crisis threatens availability of the key component used to make aluminum, Germany’s association of metals producers WVM said on Tuesday.

European magnesium stocks have been particularly affected by the lack of supplies from China, which has a near monopoly on the magnesium market, the association said in a letter to the German government. The worst part of this shortage is about to come, it noted.

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Metals head for record, zinc spikes as energy crisis hits supply (Bloomberg News – October 14, 2021)

https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/

Base metals surged, led by zinc which spiked to the highest since 2007 after European smelters became the latest casualties in a global energy crisis that’s knocking supply offline and heaping pressure on manufacturers.

Zinc rose as much as 6.9 per cent on the London Metal Exchange, and a gauge of six industrial metals rapidly closed in on an all-time high. Aluminum, one of the most energy-intensive commodities, is at the highest since 2008.

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Mining giant Rio Tinto’s control of Nechako River waterflow in B.C. challenged by local First Nations – by David Carrigg (Vancouver Sun – October 3, 2021)

https://vancouversun.com/

Mining giant Rio Tinto’s control over the Nechako River watershed in Northern B.C. is being challenged by three impacted First Nations and the Regional District of Bulkley Nechako.

According to a Memorandum of Understanding signed between the regional district and the Saik’uz, Stellat’en and Nadleh Whut’en First Nations, the parties want to see a new water flow regime for the river “that benefits all people within the watershed,” plus the establishment of a new river governance regime.

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Industrial Metals Charge to Fresh Highs as Inflation Runs Hot (Bloomberg News – September 9, 2021)

https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/

(Bloomberg) — A broad rally in base metals markets is gathering pace, with tight supply, logistical logjams and booming demand creating an inflationary storm that’s driving prices to multiyear highs.

Aluminum notched a fresh 13-year high and nickel rose to the highest since 2014 in London. Both metals are benefiting from China’s crackdown on emissions from energy-intensive industries, while their role in the green revolution is buoying the longer-term outlook.

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The coup in tiny Guinea matters at a geopolitical level. The US-China ‘cold war’ is a race for strategic dominance of commodities – by Tom Fowdy (RT.com – September 7, 2021)

https://www.rt.com/

Tom Fowdy is a British writer and analyst of politics and international relations with a primary focus on East Asia.

The impoverished country is rich in essential metals that Beijing desperately needs. So was the military takeover by a former French legionnaire with ties to America a plot by the usual Western suspects?

The West African nation of Guinea has just experienced a military coup. Lieutenant-Colonel Mamady Doumbouya, with an elite segment of troops, has overthrown the government of Alpha Conde and seized power, a move that has been condemned by the African Union and China, with the latter demanding that the president be released.

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Guinea coup rattles iron ore and bauxite markets, stokes economic uncertainty – Elliot Smith (CNBC.com – September 7, 2021)

https://www.cnbc.com/

A military junta claimed to have seized control in the West African country of Guinea and detained President Alpha Conde, casting uncertainty over key bauxite and iron ore supplies.

The coup, carried out on Sunday by an elite special forces unit led by 41-year-old Col. Mamady Doumbouya, is the latest in a series of power grabs in the region over the past year, including in nearby Mali and Chad.

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It’s time to end the US steel and aluminum tariffs – by Marc L. Busch (The Hill – August 9, 2021)

https://thehill.com/

In an interview with Bloomberg last week, Sec. of Commerce Gina Raimondo said that U.S. steel and aluminum tariffs had done the trick. Folks were back to work, and producers had increased output.

What about the threat that Europe will increase its retaliation by year’s end if the Biden administration doesn’t end the tariffs? Raimondo said the U.S. is willing to deal but that “to simply say ‘no tariffs’ is not the solution.” Actually, it is.

Raimondo’s statement is the stuff of negotiations. After all, the U.S. isn’t going to start its talks with the European Union (EU) by unilaterally disarming.

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Australia and Guinea to drive global bauxite production growth – report – by Editor (Mining.com – August 2, 2021)

https://www.mining.com/

New projects coming online in key producers Guinea, Indonesia and Australia as well as a ramp-up in Indian and Indonesian production will drive bauxite production growth in 2021 after the covid-19 pandemic in 2020, Fitch Solutions predicts in its latest industry report.

Australia’s bauxite sector will maintain steady output growth, supported by a solid project pipeline. Australia holds 12 of the 32 new bauxite projects in Fitch’s Key Mines Projects Database, more than any other country.

Rio Tinto’s expansion at the Amrun project will drive bauxite production in the country over the coming years, Fitch says. The Amrun project achieved first production in December 2018 and ramped up operations to the full production rate of 22.8mn tonnes per annum (mtpa) in April 2019.

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How Canada can get back some of its former glory as a maker of things the world wants to buy – by Kevin Carmichael (Financial Post – July 13, 2021)

https://financialpost.com/

Anthony Caputo’s order book at Can Art Aluminum Extrusion LP is a directory of the world’s most important automobile companies, all of them investing in EVs.

Automotive supply chains are being overhauled to build electric vehicles, and his Brampton, Ont.-based company will be an important node when they solidify since it has emerged as a leading supplier of one of the most important parts: the aluminum cases that protect the batteries, a tricky bit of engineering.

The cases must be both lightweight to help maximize the distance vehicles can travel between charges, and durable enough to keep the battery from exploding in a collision.

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Aluminum industry faces big decarbonization challenges — report – by Staff (Mining.com – June 16, 2021)

https://www.mining.com/

A new report by Wood Mackenzie analyzes the challenges and opportunities that the future presents for aluminum, as the buildout of low-carbon energy supply and transmission will consume vast quantities of primary aluminum and associated alumina and bauxite.

Although such a forecast seems to be rosy, the market analyst says that the metal’s role in the green economy may be dampened by the fact that the industry will have to secure low-carbon power, which itself requires the use of low-carbon aluminium, among other metals.

“On a global basis, power accounted for close to 60% of greenhouse gas emissions relating to aluminum production in 2020,” the report reads, pointing out that the primary aluminum industry accounted for around 2.6% of global GHG emissions in 2020, of which 70% came from China.

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How Biden’s Win Affects Commodities Hit by Trade Wars, Tariffs – by Joe Deaux (Bloomberg News – November 8, 2020)

https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/

(Bloomberg) — It’s been a tumultuous four years for U.S. commodity industries that found themselves a key focus of the White House through its aggressive trade policy agenda.

From steel and aluminum tariffs to grain subsidies to boosting exports of liquefied natural gas, very few corners of the global commodities market eluded Donald Trump’s attention.

There was at least one memo, executive order, pronouncement or tweet bringing some sort of attention to uranium, soybeans, and rare earths, the kinds of materials that haven’t received attention from American presidents in years.

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Ohio craft brewers bank on cans during the pandemic. Now comes an aluminum shortage.- by Patrick Cooley (The Columbus Dispatch – October 18, 2020)

https://www.dispatch.com/

Ohio’s craft brewers are preparing for an aluminum shortage as more and more beer makers put their concoctions in cans.

The shortage is likely to hit the state’s smallest breweries especially hard because they have fewer resources and less leverage with metal suppliers, industry insiders said.

At the beginning of 2020, breweries sold much of their beer to restaurants and bars, which meant filling kegs for draught beer. Then came the coronavirus pandemic, which confined many Ohioans to their homes and continues to weigh on the hospitality industry.

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No need to panic, but beer makers can’t get enough cans (Financial Post – October 7, 2020)

https://financialpost.com/

John Sleeman was looking for cans of Sleeman Cream Ale at a store, but couldn’t find them. “There were no cans,” the founder of Canada’s third-largest brewery said.

Instead, he settled for bottles, because Sleeman Breweries Ltd. and other Canadian beer brewers are struggling to get enough cans to meet their needs in the midst of a months-long can shortage in North America.

The can shortage means consumers’ preferred brand of beer — or pop, for that matter — might not always be available in the kind of package they want it in. But brewers this week said that, in most cases, they aren’t actually running out of packages to put their liquid in, just the most popular package.

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OPINION: Score one for Canada: On aluminum tariffs, the U.S. bully blinks – by Lawrence Martin (Globe and Mail – September 17, 2020)

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/

The situation was rife with potential conflict. In the throes of a U.S. election campaign, Canada was preparing to announce major retaliation against President Donald Trump’s administration for the levies it proposed last month against Canadian aluminum imports.

The countermeasures could have affected votes in battleground states, and the likelihood was that Mr. Trump would strike back, escalating tensions as he fought for his political livelihood and drawing Canada into election hostilities.

But unless Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland is out-and-out lying, the bully has backed off, having run away with its tail between its legs. Just a couple of hours before Ottawa’s retaliatory tariffs were to be imposed, Mr. Trump withdrew his aluminum levies, thus ending the dispute.

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