Abu Dhabi Power Corporation has laid claim, anew, to the “world’s lowest tariff” for solar power, with competitive bids for the 2GW Al Dhafra project setting a price of 1.35 cents in US currency, roughly $A0.02/kWh.
The French government’s €5 billion bailout of Renault got the green light from the European Commission on Wednesday (29 April), as the EU executive heralded the carmaker’s focus on electric vehicle development.
The Australian Energy Market Operator is expected to make significant revisions to its 20-year blueprint for the national grid after conceding that the capital of costs new transmission links, pumped hydro facilities and gas-fired generators are significantly higher than it assumed in its draft 2020 Integrated System Plan. And while the capital costs for these more traditional technologies are between 30 and 50 per cent higher than initially modelled, AEMO has also conceded that the cost of battery storage – the relatively new technology – is likely to be up to 40 per cent cheaper, and with longer life than assumed in its draft ISP.
Tianqi Lithium Corp 002466.SZ, one of the world's top lithium producers, said on Tuesday its net loss for 2019 was expected to be twice as big as it previously indicated after raising the impairment provision on its stake in Chilean miner SQM. The Chinese firm, which has flagged liquidity problems as it struggles to repay loans taken out to buy the 23.8% stake in 2018, said in a filing to the Shenzhen Stock Exchange its annual net loss is now set to total 5.98 billion yuan ($843.6 million).
Financing for the world's biggest lithium-ion battery plant seems to be secured. According to the South Korean media, LG Chem just received another huge loan for its lithium-ion battery gigafactory in Poland. Three banks - Korea Development Bank (KDB), Export-Import Bank of Korea (Korea Eximbank) and Nonghyup Bank - reportedly offered some €550 million for the project, which in total will cost €1.5 billion ($1.65 billion).
European Metals Holdings’ shareholders have approved a major investment in the company’s Cinovec lithium and tin project in Czech Republic, believed to be Europe’s largest deposit of the battery metal. The decision allows Czech utility CEZ, in which the state holds a 70% share, to invest €29.1 million ($32m) for a 51% equity interest in Geomet. The company is EMH’s subsidiary and holder of the project licenses. Cinovec is now fully funded up to the decision to construct, EMH said, paving the way for the project to become the first European Union producer of battery-grade lithium from a local mine.
Mineral Resources has moved to keep secret the price it receives for lithium as the sector continues to languish and a cloud hangs over its Mt Marion mine. Chris Ellison-led Mineral Resources confirmed on Friday it had abandoned a policy of disclosing pricing for spodumene produced at Mt Marion in Western Australia. Lithium prices have been tumbling for more than a year, with Mineral Resources last reporting a 6 per cent spodumene concentrate price of $US520.92 a tonne for the December quarter. This compared with $US930.80 a tonne a year earlier. Canaccord expects spodumene concentrate to average $US455 a tonne in 2020.
Daimler’s Mercedes-Benz is killing its program to develop passenger cars powered by hydrogen fuel cells. The company has been working on fuel-cell vehicles for more than 30 years — chasing the dream of a zero-emissions car that has a long driving range, three-minute fill-ups, and emits only water vapor. In the end, the company conceded that building hydrogen cars was too costly, about double the expense of an equivalent battery-electric vehicle.
Chilean miner SQM said on Thursday the coronavirus outbreak had yet to hit its lithium output, but warned it might have to scale back plans for 2020 if a slump continues in demand for the coveted battery metal. The world´s No. 2 miner of lithium had planned to unleash at least $330 million in 2020 to expand production capacity out of Chile´s Atacama salt flat, according to SQM board chairman Alberto Salas.
Lithium batteries will soon power Electric Vehicles (EVs) traveling 2,000 km on a single charge, say the team at Brighsun New Energy. The company is preparing for industrial trials later in the year for a range of lithium-sulfur (Li-S) batteries that can power a cell phone for over a week and can theoretically travel close to 2,000 km on a single charge. The revolution is underway. Through nearly 8 years of research, the Brighsun team developed lithium-sulfur (Li-S) batteries with an energy density 5-8 times higher than conventional secondary batteries. According to results from an internationally accredited testing agency (SGS), Brighsun's new technology allows an Li-S battery to keep 91% of its initial capacity after 1,700 cycles at a rate of 2C (being fully charged/discharged in 30 mins). That means the capacity decay per cycle is as low as 0.01%. Even at a more aggressive rate of 5C (being fully charged/discharged in 12.5 mins), Brighsun's Li-S battery retains 74% of its initial capacity after 1,000 cycles (capacity decay per cycle of 0.026%). The cathode energy density for the 1th cycle after activation at charge rate of 1C is 2103.8Wh/kg.
Electric vehicle (EV) sales in India have risen sharply over the year, with two-wheeled modes of transport accounting for the vast majority of sales in the world’s second-most-populous country. Sales of EVs in the country hit 156,000 in the 2019-20 financial year, figures from the Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles (SMEV) showed Monday, up from 130,000 the previous year. “Two-wheelers” accounted for a whopping 152,000 of the total sales, with car and bus sales hitting 3,400 and 600 respectively.
While the Trump administration has resumed its swipes at China, European officials are traditionally less willing to be openly critical, in part for fear of retribution. The fact that politicians in Berlin, Paris, London and Brussels are expressing concern over Beijing’s narrative on Covid-19 hints at a deeper resentment with wide-ranging consequences. Already some European Union members are pursuing policies to reduce their dependence on China and keep potential predatory investments in check, defensive measures that risk hurting China-EU trade worth almost $750 billion last year.
The nickel industry would need to double, cobalt supply would need to grow five times its current size while lithium would need to nearly 12 times to meet the requisite demand. The lithium industry must add capacity equivalent to the size of the entire industry in 2019 every year for the next decade. Meanwhile, the nickel industry alone would require over US$100 billion investment to build new capacity.
General Motors has broken ground on the new lithium-ion battery plant it is building near Lordstown, Ohio in partnership with Korean company LG Chem. Tribune Chronicle says GM is planning to have the battery plant up and running by January of 2022. The plant will mass-produce battery cells for GM’s future battery-electric vehicles, including the GMC Hummer EV and Cadillac Lyriq.
A new Federal Government manufacturing task force has been set up to focus on this very issue. It is part of the commission headed by former Fortescue Metals chief executive Nev Power to identify ways to help the economy respond in a post-COVID-19 world. The manufacturing element of the task force is led by former Dow Chemicals boss and Donald Trump-advisor Andrew Liveris, who recently said Australia had "drank the free-trade juice" for too long, and signalled an end to the era of "off-shoring". The taskforce, which is only an advisory panel, has so far signalled a focus on sectors such as food, defence, mining, medical and engineering — and even the space sector. Australia has an abundance of lithium, but exports the raw product to China to create batteries used in devices such as the iPhone and electric car batteries. "How incredibly stupid it is for us as a nation to dig the lithium out of the ground, send it overseas and buy the batteries back at 50-times the price," Professor Green said. A new $135 million lithium battery research centre announced last year is designed to change that process, and in-turn develop an Australian lithium manufacturing sector.
Tianqi Lithium Corp, one of the world's top lithium producers, said on Friday it was exploring selling equity and assets, as well as bringing in strategic investors to address liquidity problems but that no agreements had yet been signed. The Chinese company, which is set to post heavy losses in both 2019 and the first quarter of 2020 amid low lithium prices, made the comments in a filing to the Shenzhen Stock Exchange after reports it was looking to sell a stake in its Australian joint venture Talison Lithium to cut debt.
Australia’s grid-scale battery market had a record year in 2019 and is expected to sail past 500MWh in 2020 and add at least double the amount of new energy storage capacity as the nation’s residential sector.
Tesla Inc. is benefiting from hopes that it is nimbler than its Detroit peers to weather the economic destruction ignited by the novel coronavirus. Tesla shares have been on a tear in recent sessions, boosted by recent Wall Street upgrades even as the pandemic snuffs out near-term demand for vehicles and other big-ticket items. Investors have focused on still-healthy first-quarter vehicle deliveries, Tesla’s proxy for sales, and the announcement that production of the Model Y, a compact SUV, started in January and that the first few vehicles were delivered last month, ahead of schedule. They also seem heartened that the company tapped capital markets and cushioned its balance sheet at a crucial time — fresh from reporting fourth-quarter GAAP and adjusted profit well above Wall Street expectations and just as the first few U.S. cases of COVID-19 surfaced in February. Tesla has handily outperformed the S&P 500 index and the Dow Jones Industrial Average. So far this year, the stock is up more than 80%, versus losses of 2% and 10% for the S&P and the Dow. The stock gained 25% in the January-to-March quarter, versus a loss of 20% for the S&P and 23% for the Dow. Tesla is also outperforming its Detroit peers; shares of General Motors Co and Ford Motor Co. have fallen 41% and 46% this year, respectively.
Germany’s auto industry association VDA on Thursday joined a chorus of demands from auto industry executives and politicians calling for more incentives to revive demand for low emission vehicles in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. Mueller’s remarks, made on Wednesday and published by the VDA on Thursday, follow calls for state aid made by Bavarian premier Markus Soeder on April 8. At the time, he called for a cash-for-clunkers scrappage scheme to boost low emission cars, an idea which was immediately endorsed by BMW’s Chief Executive Oliver Zipse.
Leading Chinese electric vehicle battery maker CATL has more than tripled the size of a planned overseas bond issue to raise capital for a plant under construction in Germany, as well as for other purposes. The supplier plans to issue no more than $3 billion in bonds in overseas markets, the company said this week. That is significantly higher than the $800 million it said it planned to raise in November with an overseas bond issue.
The city of Joplin, near Missouri’s borders with Oklahoma and Kansas, is seeking to tempt the electric-car maker with $1 billion in incentives and savings to build a new factory for its futuristic Cybertruck. Joplin is offering Tesla a 1,042 acre site at a 50% discount, according to a website it’s built to court the company led by billionaire Elon Musk. It’s also coaxing the carmaker with a 100% tax abatement for 12 years and various other tax breaks and incentives.
The global electric vehicle (EV) battery market will likely be restructured into an oligopoly of two big players ― Korea's LG Chem and CATL of China. And LG, which remains in second place after Panasonic of Japan, is expected to quickly claim the top market share position as the battery maker has succeeded in broadening its customer base, according to an industry source, Wednesday. The source said LG Chem will likely lead the global EV battery market, edging out Panasonic, as the company has reached "economies of scale," helping the firm lower manufacturing costs. "For Panasonic, which is known to have the largest market share, there is a concern that the company is too dependent on Tesla, while LG Chem is also supplying its batteries to the U.S. EV maker's Gigafactory 3 plant in Shanghai," he added.
The three major Korean electric vehicle (EV) battery manufacturers — LG Chem, Samsung SDI, and SK Innovation — invested a total of seven trillion won in production facilities in 2019. They are determined to continue to invest aggressively in 2020. The three Korean battery makers are expected to make large-scale investments in 2020. LG Chem has already announced that it plans to invest 3 trillion won in facilities this year. SK Innovation also has an order backlog worth 60 trillion won, and plans to increase battery production more than 10 times in two years to meet the orders. The company is investing in facility expansion in the United States and Europe. Samsung SDI has not disclosed its order backlog specifically but its order volume is reportedly similar to or more than that of SK Innovation.
Fitch Ratings has affirmed the Long-Term Issuer Default Ratings (IDR) of Albemarle Corp. (NYSE: ALB) and issuing subsidiaries at 'BBB'. In addition, Fitch has affirmed the company's existing senior unsecured revolver, term loan, and notes at 'BBB', and affirmed its Short-term IDR
As the overall sales volume drops, the plug-in share surges to new all-time records - 11.7% of new passenger cars. The French car market was significantly affected by the coronavirus lockdown in March, which translated into a massive 72% collapse of new cars. Plug-in electric car sales were less affected and a small growth of 12% was noted in March to 7,740. That's roughly half of the records from January and February.
China auto sales drop for 21st consecutive month in March; March sales nevertheless 367% higher than in February; New energy vehicle sales fall for the ninth straight month; Auto production hit by coronavirus closures.
South Korean carmakers and auto parts firms will suffer a cash shortage of over 28 trillion won (US$23 billion) if the coronavirus outbreak continues to affect the automobile industry for the next four months, a local industry association said Friday.
The question we asked was, ‘Have the effects of the current COVID-19 lockdown made you change your mind about buying an electric vehicle?’ The firm found that 45% of respondents were considering buying an EV after seeing how clear the air can be. An additional 17% had already decided to buy an electric car and are even now more certain about their decision. That makes 62% of UK consumers in that UK survey ready to go electric.
The soft, silvery-white alkali metal is expected to enter the EU list of critical raw materials later this year because of its strategic importance to the automotive industry, EURACTIV has learned. “Europe will require massively higher volumes of lithium for its battery revolution, but is highly dependent on supplies from elsewhere in the world,” says Guy Thiran from Eurometaux, a trade association. Increasing home-grown production will strengthen Europe’s resilience to trade disruptions, he said, backing new initiatives to develop lithium mining and recycling activities in the EU.
A new royalty arrangement for Western Australia’s lithium producers came into effect on 27 March 2020. Following extensive industry consultation in 2019 and State Government approval, the amendments introduce a five per cent feedstock royalty rate for lithium hydroxide and lithium carbonate, where those are the first products sold and the feedstock is spodumene concentrate.
A total of 10,329 new fully electric cars were registered in Germany in March 2020, reports the Federal Motor Transport Authority (KBA) in a press release. This is a new record, while the share of e-cars in total registrations also rose to its highest ever level at almost five percent. The share of petrol cars continued its downward trend of the past months to 50 percent.
South Korean battery manufacturer LG Chem took the lead in the global electric vehicle battery market in February, accounting for more than one third of global EV battery capacity. According to the latest report from Adamas Intelligence, LG Chem supplied 1,800 MWh of EV batteries for newly sold passenger EVs in February, commanding 34.6 percent of total battery capacity deployed to EVs globally in the same month. While the sales of xEV car in China were weak, the market still expanded by 21 percent on-year. LG Chem was followed by Japan’s Panasonic, China’s CATL and Korea’s Samsung SDI.
French renewable energy developer Neoen is planning a massive new big battery near Geelong – dubbed the “Victoria big battery” – that will be up to four times the size of the original “Tesla big battery” at Hornsdale in South Australia. Plans for the $300 million battery, proposed to be sized at around 600MW, have been unveiled by the City of Geelong and form part of the group’s response to an urgent call by the Victoria state government to “go it alone” and fast track a much needed upgrade of its main transmission link to Victoria.
The Northern Territory government has announced plans to spend $30 million on a big battery for the Darwin-Katherine grid, a move it says will pay for itself within five years because of reduced gas costs and help expand solar power and meet the 50 per cent renewables by 2030.
The coronavirus pandemic is uncovering new risk in the global supply chain for lithium-ion batteries as countries that are pivotal in producing lithium and other metals needed for battery manufacturing roll out restrictions in a bid to control the spread of the virus. Stall said the pandemic could change decades of corporate thought on the risks associated with a globalized supply chain given today's transportation disruptions. As a result, trends such as automakers localizing battery manufacturing to their EV assembly plants could accelerate.
The West Australia Labor government has unveiled a new energy roadmap that puts community battery storage at the top of its proposals to embrace a wholesale switch to distributed energy sources such as rooftop solar panels, household and community batteries, electric vehicles and microgrids.
Tesla Inc said on Thursday production and deliveries of its Model Y sport utility vehicle was significantly ahead of schedule, as the company delivered the highest number of vehicles in any first quarter to date.
General Motors Co and Honda Motor Co Ltd said on Thursday they would jointly develop two new electric vehicles for Honda and are exploring more ways to expand their alliance. The new vehicles will use GM batteries and be assembled in GM plants in North America, the companies said. Honda plans to begin selling the vehicles in the United States and Canada in 2024.
Late last year, Formula E officials announced the specs for the third generation of all-electric race cars that will debut on the motorway in 2022. The new Formula E cars will be the first to use extremely fast charging stations that pack enough power to fully charge a Tesla Model S battery in about 10 minutes. Although the racers will only use the charging stations for brief pit stops, they’ll provide a glimpse of the future beyond the racetrack: EV batteries that charge in the same amount of time it takes to fill a gas tank.
Benchmark Mineral Intelligence can confirm Toyota is planning to have 60GWh of lithium ion battery capacity by end-2025. This is enough battery cells to make just over 1 million electric vehicles (EV) with an average pack size of 55kWh. Although the plan is in its early stages, it is a step change for Toyota which has been criticised in the past for not taking lithium ion EVs seriously enough, and instead favouring fuel cell technology.
Australian company Infinity Lithium has signed a memorandum of understanding with the European Battery Alliance to promote its lithium mine project in San José, Extremadura. It would be the first lithium project to obtain European financing but has already raised the hackles of local environmentalists and residents.
Chinese electric vehicle battery maker Farasis Energy has received regulatory approval to raise around 3.4 billion yuan ($479 million) in an initial public offering on China’s Nasdaq-like STAR board, according to a statement by the Shanghai Stock Exchange. Farasis, which said last year that it planned a share market listing, is expected to be valued at around 30 billion yuan after the IPO, said two sources with direct knowledge of the matter.
Galaxy Resources has relocated its interstate contract workers to the Mt Cattlin lithium mine near Ravensthorpe, Western Australia for up to six months for health and safety reasons. This move ensures that Galaxy’s entire workforce is Western Australian based to keep in line with the state government’s recently enforced border closure to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The company has stressed that the spodumene and tantalum concentrate mine is operating as normal, despite the uncertainty of coronavirus impacts hanging over the industry.
@amiller_bmi: "Outside of China, the impact of the COVID-19 on nickel sulphate pricing has been two pronged", says @benchmarkmin's @GregMiller_BMI: 1) Limited impact on long-term contracts vs 2) standstill in spot market.
@robertbaylis: ioneer releases positive Rhyolite Ridge lithium-boron DFS study with $785M ( $74M for Y3 LiOH plant) CAPEX for 20.6kt LCE and 174.4ktpy, with $2,510/t net of boron BPC OPEX highlighting by-product advantage on the @Roskill_Info cost curve.
@amiller_bmi: With the slowdown in battery demand diversification outside China, the evolution of anode and cathode technology splits will inevitably be slowed. Expect China's LFP cathode and synthetic anode focus to form a bigger part of the 2020 picture.
@HC_Haplo: This is the second FIRB decision to knock back Chinese Interest in a [tech metals] development even though it's in the DRC. Not great for AVZ shareholders. Morrison is sending a message it would seem.
Very interesting resurgence of LFP in China. First BYD, then Tesla (CATL), and now #Volkswagen officially acquiring a stake in cell maker Guoxuan (with a large LFP capacity)
@DKurac: All new 2020-2021 BYD EV models to carry its LFP super-battery, China media reports citing co's conference call with CITIC Securities. Earlier reports showed, BYD 2020-2021 models to be based on its e-platform, except 21Q1 ride-hailing model, which will use new platform.
@LedouxPedailles: ????South Korean Lithium Hydroxide Imports back to more "normal" levels in March after collapsing in February. Prices around $14,382/t ????
@EvergenEnergy: The NT Government has approved the procurement of a large scale battery for the Darwin-Katherine grid. This is a great step forward in the government's implementation of the Roadmap to Renewables.
@backstroke_: South Korea Q120 update. OH>CO3. Lots of potential distortions with current situation. As things stand, CO3 at this run rate 2020 projected lower than 2018 actuals, while OH continues to grow strongly y/y.
@lithiumforum: The subsidy offers for electric car factories are going up! Joplin, Missouri, is seeking to tempt Tesla with $1 billion in incentives and savings to build a new factory for its Cybertruck.
@christiaanhtznr: @Volkswagen brand says plans a staggered resumption of production at its manufacturing sites, starting with the ID3 plant in Zwickau as well as Bratislava on April 20, continuing with the rest of the German factories and those in Spain, Portugal, Russia
@robertbaylis: “Global lithium demand for the year will be 25% lower than pre-virus forecasts, according to commodities consultancy @Roskill_Info” as China’s EV slowdown deepens debt woes at Tianqi Lithium and Ganfeng Lithium warns on profit.
@northvolt: A full-scale recycling plant will be built at Northvolt Ett to secure a goal of 50% recycled material in new cells by 2030. The plant will be operational in 2022 with capability to recycle approximately 25.000 tons of battery cells per year.
@D_Jimenez_Sch: Korea Lithium Imports March 20 (last 12 months): LiOH gaining share over Li2CO3, however, total LCE imports flats since around Sep 19.
@seanmmitchell: Coronavirus Got Rid of Smog. Can Electric Cars Do So Permanently?
@sdmoores: The coronavirus wave is making its way upstream towards lithium ion battery raw materials. Best way to visualise it is it’s reaching cathode / anode makers. Business as usual for raw materials won’t last long as we face a “lost quarter” of demand In 2020.
@sdmoores: Coronavirus / Covid -19 shockwave is about to hit the lithium ion battery industry. Tier 1 Asia Producers bracing for demand to slump 15% in 2020.
@amiller_bmi: Use of LFP batteries in both EVs
@amiller_bmi: Latest @benchmarkmin forecasts reflect lower EV growth levels for 2020. China rebound from Q2 onwards will support the supply chain to some extent but 2020 battery base case reduced by 18% on wider macro pressures persist.
@backstroke_: Eramet - no go in Argentina
@CDMRawles: Impacts of COVID-19 evident on March cobalt pricing, Chinese domestic sulphate faring worst down 10.0% mom. Fears over supply could offer support as mine closures and lockdowns disrupt supply chain.
Who controls the lithium ion battery to EV supply chain? One of our most circulated charts updated with @benchmarkmin 2019 data and now incl manganese lithium cobalt nickel graphite
@amiller_bmi: All battery material prices down @ end of Q1 as coronavirus pressures take their toll: #Lithium -5%; Cobalt sulphate -10%, Nickel sulphate -6%
@BYDCompany: Huge breakthrough in battery technology that will redefine safety standards for the entire industry. ✅Nail Penetration; ✅Heated to 572 F; ✅Overcharged by 260%; ✅Crushed; ✅Bent. No test resulted in fire or explosion!
@climatecouncil: The NT Gov has revealed a new $6k renewables grant for homes
@sdmoores: Toyota is ramping up its lithium ion battery capacity to 60GWh >2025. That’s enough to make 1m EVs @ 55kWh av pack. @benchmarkmin expects this will be accross all sites incl JVs w/ Panasonic and BYD. A step change from Toyota.
@JamesTFrith: Awesome to see @LucidMotors 400 mile test trip of the Lucid Air on a single charge. They are in a test vehicle and you can see some of the interior furnishings are missing, reducing weight a bit. But this is countered by having two passengers. Impressive!
@robertbaylis: Key takeaways from @Roskill_Info's lithium update sent to subscribers yesterday inc. COVID-19 impact on 2020 as forecast end-Q1: avg. costs ⬇️10%; TG demand ⬇️4.5%, BG demand ⬆️21.5%; mine supply ⬇️23%, refined supply ⬇️6%; avg. contract price ⬇️22%; ????on #EV mkt as main ⬇️ risk