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Re: General news on resource issues that may affect EVs

Posted: Tue Jul 21, 2020 6:20 pm
by GRA
Not exactly a resource issue, but this seemed the best place for this. IEVS:
SK Innovation-LG Chem Clash Might Cause 'Catastrophic Supply Disruption' ... isruption/

Two South Korean manufacturers, LG Chem and SK Innovation are currently busy expanding EV battery manufacturing capacity in the U.S. as the demand from carmakers is strong. However, the dispute between the two may lead to "a catastrophic supply disruption," according to Volkswagen. . . .

"Last year, LG Chem sued smaller rival SK Innovation over alleged
theft of commercial secrets. SK Innovation defends itself, but there is a risk that the company might be banned from the U.S. EV battery market."

Reuters reports that the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) made a preliminary ruling in LG Chem’s favor and the final verdict is expected in October 2020. Since SK Innovation is building two battery plants in the U.S. and has serious customers (Volkswagen and Ford), which are also preparing for EV production, it's not hard to imagine what will happen to those EVs if the battery project is ceased.

Billion-dollar investments and thousands of jobs are threatened by the ban, as there is no easy way to order batteries from someone else in volume right away.

Because of that, we can only guess that there is only one option in the case of loss - SK Innovation will be fined, but not banned.

The consequences of this case might have global repercussions.

Re: General news on resource issues that may affect EVs

Posted: Mon Jul 27, 2020 4:54 pm
by GRA
Judge wants study of what lithium mining is doing to fragile Atacama in Chile

Atacama supplies around one-quarter of the world's lithium ... ter-study/

A top environmental judge in Chile renewed a call for a government-vetted water study to help stamp out lingering questions about sustainability that have cast a pall over Chile's lithium-rich Salar de Atacama.

Water — both fresh and saline, where the lithium lies — has long been a sticking point for miners at Atacama, one of the world's richest reserves of the ultralight battery metal. The flat sits amid the world's driest desert.

Mauricio Oviedo, president of the Environmental Tribunal of Antofagasta, a region home to all of the country's lithium production and much of its copper output, called the salt flat "highly fragile."

"If Chile wants to continue managing the Salar, it should have a model that would give us (all) greater certainty," Oviedo said in an interview with Reuters.

"To the court, it seems like commonsense if we want to do sustainable mining in the Salar that we effectively need to have all the elements on the table."

Oviedo first called for a study in December when the Antofagasta court he oversees tossed out a $25 million remediation plan honed over three years by Chilean lithium producer SQM, saying it had relied on questionable science.

The court cannot require a water study. But Chile development agency Corfo, which oversees lithium holdings at Atacama, has hired a third-party to conduct a hydrological survey of the Salar. That study has been repeatedly delayed since 2018.

Oviedo's decision reignited concerns over SQM's ability to ramp up output to meet fast-growing demand from the electric vehicle industry. Atacama, home to SQM and top competitor Albemarle, already supplies around one-quarter of the world's lithium.

Regulators required SQM to develop the disputed compliance plan after charging the miner with over-pumping lithium-rich brine from beneath the flat. The company has appealed the decision to scrap the program to the Supreme Court. A decision is pending. . . .

German automakers Volkswagen and Daimler this year joined the push for more sustainable lithium mining in Chile, a sign of growing supply chain concerns ahead of an expected electric vehicle boom.

Re: General news on resource issues that may affect EVs

Posted: Sun Aug 02, 2020 6:53 pm
by GRA
FWIW, as this is probably the thousandth prediction that this time we really have hit peak oil.

End game for oil? OPEC prepares for an age of dwindling demand

The 'possibility exists in the minds of all the key players' that consumption might never fully recover ... y-recover/