We all are aware that petrol and diesel vehicles are very harmful to the environment. Also, with the surging petrol and diesel prices, people are now looking for alternatives. Electric vehicles are one such alternative, which is user and pocket-friendly.
If sources are to be believed, the United States is ramping with electrical vehicle development manufacturers. But still, the vehicles have not been able to capture the market completely. Why? Because of a shortage of battery materials. These batteries are very important as there are car batteries that charge in 10 minutes.
Surprised! let us find out what is causing this shortfall of battery materials and how is the United States dealing with it.
What are Electric Vehicles battery materials?
Most electric vehicle battery materials are made of lithium and rely on a mix of cobalt, manganese, nickel, graphite, and other primary components. Though none of these materials have been classified as ‘rare materials’, few are hard to find.
It should be noted that electric vehicle batteries store a huge amount of energy that can be discharged quickly, safely, and smoothly.
What is the rub?
There are important issues that surround the production of batteries for these electric vehicles. These issues need to be acknowledged and addressed globally if manufacturers feel that electric vehicles are the future of the global transport system.
Today, China controls most of the world's battery minerals mining and processing units. This makes even giants like the United States dependent on China for importing batteries like foreign oil. Some leading innovators have quoted that the biggest challenge they face is keeping the production of those future innovations in the United States. This is possible because of the lack of natural resources.
What happens now?
Since there are tougher regulations on emissions, automakers are adding more and more Electric vehicles into their annual bucket lists. Statistics show that planned investments for EV vehicles jumped up 41% in the last year. It is estimated to reach $330 by 2025, experts say.
Also, President Biden has made the electrification of vehicles a core element in his clean energy strategy.
Despite these efforts, one of the biggest challenges faced in the production of EV vehicles is an improper and insecure supply of advanced lithium-ion batteries and raw materials like lithium, cobalt, nickel, and graphite needed to manufacture these batteries.
How is the United States tackling this crisis?
The United States is taking up various measures to curb this issue of manufacturing batteries that hampers the production of EV vehicles.
- The US has recently laid out a national blueprint for lithium batteries to establish a secure chain for battery materials by 2030.
- The Energy Department has announced channeling $200 million over the next five years to the US National labs to support EV and battery-related research.
- The DOE has also permitted the use of $17 billion for battery projects available under the Advanced Technology Manufacturing loan program, which was allotted during the Obama era.
- This can prove helpful for companies dealing with the processing of raw materials for manufacturing batteries.
Given proper time, the hurdles faced in manufacturing EVs, especially batteries, can be solved through appropriate channelization from money and resources. As Nico Cuevas, CEO, Urbix, the only US-based graphite processor, said, “We want to eat a lot of ketchup, but we do not have enough tomatoes to manufacture it.”
Therefore it is for you to think, which is a better buy, plug power or fuel cell energy?
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