Battery-grade nickel demand to grow as world sets sights on low-carbon future – by Simone Liedtke (MiningWeekly.com – November 19, 2021)

https://www.miningweekly.com/

The global green transition and electrification of transport has started a paradigm shift in the demand dynamics of metals, which are required for a low-carbon future, and are set to experience a significant boost in demand in the coming decade at least, says research agency Fitch Solutions.

Battery-grade nickel, or Class 1 nickel (which contains more than 99.8% nickel content), used in rechargeable batteries is a major beneficiary, especially as the configuration of lithium/nickel/manganese/cobalt (NMC) oxide batteries used in electric vehicles (EV), is changing, with a shift from a 1:1:1 ratio (meaning nickel, manganese and cobalt were used in the same proportion) to 5:3:2, and then to the latest 8:1:1 (with eight parts nickel to one part of manganese and cobalt each).

Read more

Biden’s bad green policy supply chain – by Terence Corcoran (Financial Post – November 20, 2021)

https://financialpost.com/

With all the policy angst about global supply chain crises that threaten various physical aspects of the international economy, from the movement of goods through vital ports to rising inflation to production bottlenecks, there’s another kind of supply chain crisis in the works.

That’s the supply of bad ideas that are streaming like flood waters into economic policy from the climate policy ocean. A prime demonstration of the ideological pileup is the chain-link of ideas driving U.S. President Joe Biden’s plans for the U.S. auto industry.

Read more

Ontario EV plan aims for more production, battery plants – by Jeff Gray and Niall McGee (Globe and Mail – November 18, 2021)

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/

Ontario Premier Doug Ford has unveiled an electric vehicle strategy that aims to have the province produce 400,000 electric cars and trucks a year by 2030 and attract two or three battery plants.

The plan, released on Wednesday at a campaign-style event at auto parts maker Linamar in Guelph, Ont., about 100 kilometres west of Toronto, says the province will partner with the industry to prepare it to make the “car of the future” and “establish and support a battery chain ecosystem” using the mineral wealth in Northern Ontario.

Read more

Clean energy faces its own supply chain crisis – by Justine Calma (The Verge – November 17, 2021)

https://www.theverge.com/

The future of energy in America will depend on whether the US can break free from its dependence on other countries that dominate clean energy supply chains. To reach the Biden administration’s energy and environmental goals, the US will have to dramatically scale up its mining and manufacturing, lawmakers argued today during a joint hearing of the House Energy Subcommittee and the Environment and Climate Change Subcommittee. They also raised serious concerns about the US’s ability to do so.

“The sustainable economy of the future will definitely need to be built and manufactured. The question that remains to be seen is whether it will be manufactured by Americans,” said Congressman Paul Tonko (D-NY) in his opening statement.

Read more

BHP sees need for battery metals more than doubling in 30 years – by Cecilia Jamasmie (Mining.com – November 17, 2021)

https://www.mining.com/

As the pace and shape of the global transition to a greener economy has become a key issue globally, the need for battery metals will grow up to four times in the next 30 years, Vandita Pant, BHP’s chief commercial officer, said on Wednesday at the FT Commodities Asia Summit.

“Some of the modelling that we have done showed that in, let’s say a decarbonised world … the world will need almost double the copper in the next 30 years than in the past 30,” she told the audience at the inaugural session.

Read more

Profiling the Greenbushes lithium mine in Western Australia – by Andrew Fawthrop (NS Energy Business.com – April 17, 2021)

NS Energy

Western Australia’s vast Greenbushes lithium mine is the world’s largest operation to extract hard rock deposits of the mineral critical to the energy transition

At the southern tip of Western Australia, around 250 kilometres south of Perth, lies the Greenbushes lithium mine – the world’s largest project to extract the increasingly critical mineral driving the clean energy transition.

The operation, which claims its name from a nearby town, is owned by Talison Lithium, a joint venture between China’s Tianqi Lithium and US chemicals firm Albemarle – although recent reports have emerged that the Chinese producer is seeking to offload some of its 51% stake in the project amid financial difficulties.

Read more

Researchers push for more accurate battery metals demand forecasts – by Valentina Ruiz Leotaud (Mining.com – November 14, 2021)

https://www.mining.com/

Common assumptions that state that demand for battery metals will continue to increase for the foreseeable future, as they are essential for high-performance lithium-ion batteries, may be misleading, a new report by CSIRO states.

According to Australia’s national science agency, unsophisticated models based on current supply levels and basic recycling rates are promoting many mischaracterizations of the real opportunities in both metal mining and recycling.

Read more

US adds nickel, zinc to draft critical minerals list, drops potash – by Mariaan Webb (MiningWeekly.com – November 2021)

https://www.miningweekly.com/

The US Geological Survey (USGS) has added nickel and zinc to its proposed list of 50 ‘critical minerals’ – defined as those essential to economic or national security and with a supply chain vulnerable to disruption – while four others, including potash, have fallen off the draft 2021 list.

The USGS has released its draft revised list of critical minerals and is allowing public comment until December 9. “The USGS’s critical minerals list provides vital information for industry, policymakers, economists and scientists on the most important minerals when it comes to US supply chains, says Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Water and Science Tanya Trujillo.

Read more

Lithium Shortage May Stall Electric Car Revolution And Embed China’s Lead: Report – by Neil Winton (Forbes Magazine – November 14, 2021)

https://www.forbes.com/

The electric car revolution will stall in the West if supplies of crucial battery elements like lithium fail to keep up with the forecast huge increase in demand.

This will drive battery prices higher, decimate profit margins, and the coveted $100 per kWh battery, which would have signaled the arrival of affordable green vehicles, will remain on the launch pad.

Read more

BHP hungry for more nickel, copper (Australian Mining – November 12, 2021)

Home

BHP is looking at investing in additional early-stage development projects as the company aims to grow its copper and nickel portfolio.

BHP chief executive officer Mike Henry spoke at the company’s annual general meeting on Thursday, suggesting the success of its current copper and nickel projects should inspire more developments to follow.

Read more

Ford is right: Ontario has the right stuff to lead on electric vehicles – Star Editorial Board (Toronto Star – November 11, 2021)

https://www.thestar.com/

Can Ontario become a one-stop shop in electric vehicle manufacture unlike any other market in all of North America? Premier Doug Ford thinks so. And in the abstract, he makes a good case. In the specific, there are major hurdles to be overcome.

Consider, first, the long-troubled Ring of Fire, the much touted and frequently stymied reserve of mineral riches in the James Bay Lowlands. The Ford government’s economic outlook of a week ago promised that the Ring of Fire, with its reserves of nickel, cobalt, manganese and more, will play a key role in the future of clean manufacturing in Ontario.

Read more

Temiskaming could be the North American refining hub to feed the electric vehicle market – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – November 9, 2021)

https://www.northernontariobusiness.com/

First Cobalt unveils ambitious expansion plans to create battery metals industrial park in northeastern Ontario

For Trent Mell, it makes little sense to mine the metals needed to power the coming electrical vehicle (EV) revolution here, ship it overseas to Asia refiners to make into battery-grade material, and then send it back to North America to use in car production.

If the president-CEO of First Cobalt has his way, the Temiskaming district will be this continent’s centre of production to deliver many of those key ingredients, shorten the logistics journey, and help create a secure home-grown supply chain for EV makers for the first time ever.

Read more

Minister celebrates ‘beautiful irony’ of lithium brine in Sask. – by Arthur White-Crummey (Regina Leader Post – November 9, 2021)

https://leaderpost.com/

Saskatchewan’s energy minister celebrated the first targeted lithium well drilled in Saskatchewan at a Tuesday event where she said the element is “having a moment” that can help the province diversify its mineral sector.

“I just held a jar of the first lithium carbonate produced here in the province of Saskatchewan out of 400-million-year-old lithium brine water,” Energy and Resources Minister Bronwyn Eyre told media gathered at a Prairie Lithium facility in Emerald Park, just east of Regina.

Read more

First Cobalt wants to go big on a battery metals processing park for Temiskaming – by Staff (Northern Ontario Business – November 8, 2021)

https://www.northernontariobusiness.com/

Refinery developer wants to supply battery-grade metals for North American car market

The Toronto company behind the refurbishment of a mothballed Temiskaming hydrometallurgical refinery said it’s going all in on creating a “battery park” to feed refined cobalt and nickel to the electric vehicle market.

First Cobalt announced it’s making a name change and other strategic moves toward providing North American automakers with a domestic source of raw material with a proposed industrial park outside the town of Cobalt in northeastern Ontario.

Read more

The problem with electric cars – by Diane Francis (Financial Post – November 9, 2021)

https://financialpost.com/

The hype and mythologizing over electric vehicles (EVs) afflicts policy-making and leads to costly subsidies that produce little environmental benefits, according to Danish climate expert Bjorn Lomborg.

“In Norway, there are more EVs per person than anywhere in the world and studies show that people have two cars — a (subsidized) EV car to go `virtue signalling’ and the real car for use for real stuff,” said Lomborg, president of the Copenhagen Consensus think tank and a visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution, in an interview with the Financial Post.

Read more