The United States must work with its allies to ensure the minerals needed for electric vehicle batteries and process them at home, taking into account the interests of the environment and other competition, the White House said Tuesday.
The strategy, Reuters reported for the first time in late May, will include new funding to expand international investment in electric vehicle (EV) metal projects through the U.S. Development Finance Corporation, as well as new efforts to boost the supply of battery recycling.
The US has been working to secure minerals from Allied countries, including Canada and Finland. The 250-page report, which contains policy recommendations, cited large supplies of lithium in Chile and Australia, which are the world’s two largest producers of white metal batteries.
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President Joe Biden’s administration will also set up a working group to identify whether minerals used in EV batteries and other technologies can be produced and processed at home.
Ensuring enough copper, lithium and other raw materials to make EV batteries is the main obstacle to Biden’s aggressive EV planets, as home mines face major regulatory barriers and anti-environmental opposition.
The White House acknowledged China’s role as the world’s largest EV metal processor and said it would expand efforts to reduce that dependency.
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“The United States cannot and does not need to process all critical battery inputs at home. It can and should work with allies and partners to expand global production and secure global supplies,” the report says.
The White House said the Department of the Interior and other agencies will work to identify gaps in the laws that allow mine to ensure the new production “meets strong standards” in terms of the environment and community input.
The report was filed against Lithium Americas Corp.’s Thacker Pass lithium project against Nevada Americans, as well as Tesla Inc. the automaker also plans to produce its own lithium.
The steps will come after Biden, which has fought in the fight against climate change and competed with the Chinese agenda, as it has promised to review gaps in supply chains in key areas for 100 days, including electric vehicles.
Democrats are pushing for aggressive climate targets to ensure that most U.S.-manufactured cars are electric by 2030 and that all road cars are electric by 2040.
As part of the recommendations of the four agencies of the executive branch, it is recommended that Biden take steps to restore the country’s strategic Mineral Warehouse and expand funding to map the mineral resources available there.
Some of these steps would require the support of Congress, where Biden’s Democrats have a meager majority.
The Department of Energy already has $ 17 billion in authority through a high-tech vehicle manufacturing loan to finance some investments.
The White House said program administrators will focus on funding battery manufacturers and companies that refine, recycle and process critical minerals.
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