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Huayou partners with LG Chem as China-South Korea ‘battery wars’ thaw continues

Mon, 04/16/2018 - 10:19 -- Xuan Zhong
Huayou partners with LG Chem as China-South Korea ‘battery wars’ thaw continues

Another Chinese-South Korea investment deal has been done to produce lithium battery materials in China— in the latest sign of a thaw in economic tensions between the countries.

Chinese mining company Zhejiang Huayou Cobalt said its subsidiary, Huayou New Energy Technology, has signed a deal with South Korea’s LG Chem to launch two new joint venture companies at a total investment of some $645.6 million.

 

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Report says China ‘well ahead’ of Europe on battery recycling— urges EU to learn from lead-acid industry

Mon, 04/16/2018 - 10:16 -- John Shepherd
Report says China ‘well ahead’ of Europe on battery recycling— urges EU to learn from lead-acid industry

An independent report by Germany’s independent and non-profit Oeko-Institut has urged the European Union that, when it comes to lithium batteries, to follow the example set by the lead-acid industry in recycling batteries to create a “sustainable” system for conserving raw materials and reusing EV batteries for energy storage.

But the report— ‘Ensuring a Sustainable Supply of Raw Materials for Electric Vehicles’— shows EU leaders that China is already “well ahead” in having a “transparent” structure that efficiently regulates the use of materials in the electro-mobility sector, the Institute said.

 

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Lithium and cobalt facing “critical” supply issues, study says

Mon, 03/19/2018 - 11:48 -- John Shepherd
Lithium and cobalt facing “critical” supply issues, study says

Supplies of lithium and cobalt are set to become “seriously critical” as demand for lithium-ion batteries in electric vehicles and other applications rises, according to a new study.

Researchers at the Helmholtz Institute Ulm of Germany’s Karlsruhe Institute of Technology say cobalt-free battery technologies, “including post-lithium technologies based on non-critical elements such as sodium”, plus magnesium, zinc, calcium and aluminium, could ease the “dependency”.

 

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China battery recycler GEM signs Glencore cobalt supply deal

Mon, 03/19/2018 - 11:42 -- Xuan Zhong
China battery recycler GEM signs Glencore cobalt supply deal

Chinese battery recycler GEM has signed a three-year colbalt materials supply deal with Swiss mining company Glencore.

GEM said the move would secure materials needed to supply batteries to China’s growing electric vehicle market.

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BMW to sign 10-year cobalt and lithium supply contracts

Mon, 02/19/2018 - 11:41 -- Xuan Zhong
BMW to sign 10-year cobalt and lithium supply contracts

Germany’s BMW Group is set to sign 10-year contracts to secure supplies of cobalt and lithium for production of electric vehicle batteries, the auto giant has told BBB.

A BMW spokesperson confirmed contracts would be signed with more than one supplier “in the near future”— but declined to name the firms involved.

 

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Call for ‘ethics pledge’ from Li-on users

Fri, 11/03/2017 - 09:41 -- Xuan Zhong
Call for ‘ethics pledge’ from Li-on users

The US-based Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) is calling for companies that source lithium-ion batteries for electronic products such as electric vehicles to commit to using only “ethically-sourced materials”.

UCS’s clean vehicles policy analyst, Josh Goldman, said the use of lithium, cobalt, nickel “and other metals that are part of an EV lithium-ion battery pack, have raised red flags about the poor human rights and worker protection records in the countries where these materials are mined”.

 

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Cobalt crisis forces Koreans to act

Mon, 07/31/2017 - 10:23 -- News Editor
Cobalt crisis forces Koreans to act

Amid growing demand for the lithium-ion batteries that power electric vehicles and smartphones, cobalt, the key energy metal, has seen a decline in production this year driven mainly by the unstable political situation of the Democratic Republic of Congo, which accounts for more than half of global cobalt production.

This month, the price of cobalt came to $61,000 per ton, a 90% jump from early in the year, according to industry data.

Photo credit: The Carter Center: G. Dubourthoumieu

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Battery storage rise to fuel metals demand, says World Bank

Thu, 07/27/2017 - 09:40 -- News Editor
Battery storage rise to fuel metals demand, says World Bank

The global trend towards using clean energy systems such as battery storage technology will see “heightened demand” for minerals and metals including lead and lithium, according to a new World Bank report.

A shift to a low-carbon future “could result in opportunities for mineral-rich countries”, the report said. But it warned these nations must have “long-term strategies in place that enable them to make smart investment decisions”.

 

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Glencore ‘in triangular lithium deal’ with China’s CATL and VW

Tue, 07/18/2017 - 10:50 -- News Editor
Glencore ‘in triangular lithium deal’ with China’s CATL and VW

Switzerland-based mining company Glencore has reportedly signed a deal to supply cobalt materials to a Chinese lithium battery manufacturer – who would in turn sell batteries for Volkswagen’s (VW) electric vehicles.

According to Reuters, the deal would see Glencore sell up to 20,000 tonnes of cobalt products to CATL (Contemporary Amperex Technology Co Ltd), a China-based battery giant who also supplies EV batteries to carmaker BMW.

 

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Cobalt price doubles in 15 months

Tue, 04/25/2017 - 09:40 -- Xuan Zhong
Cobalt price doubles in 15 months

Data from the London Metal Exchange, a global industrial metals trading website, showed cobalt, a main material used in lithium-ion batteries, has doubled in price since January 2016 (see the graph), the fact might put pressure on electric vehicle makers.

The international price of cobalt rose to $55,000 per tonne in early April this year, which is twice as much as the price recorded in the beginning of last year, around $24,000 per tonne.

 

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