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Critical Mineral Supply Chains Play a Crucial Role in the Clean Energy Transition

Critical minerals are just one subset of the materials needed to create clean energy technologies.

Hover over the diagram to view the minerals that fall under each category. 


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Clean energy technologies require A LOT of minerals.

According to IEA, to reach net-zero by 2050, the total mineral demand to produce clean energy technologies will need to grow from 7 million metric tons to 43 million metric tons by 2040.

Of the 50 critical minerals, the US is 100% import-reliant on at least 10 of them and more than 50% import-reliant on another 31.

Use the tabs in the diagram to switch from extraction to processing.  

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has destabilized global mineral supply chains and sent the price of nickel, a mineral necessary for the production of batteries, soaring. But even before the invasion, the price of batteries was expected to increase this year for the first time in over a decade. While the cost of batteries has fallen by 89% since 2010 due to advances in production, increasing demand for electric vehicles has strained supply chains and highlighted the need for greater investment. 

President Biden recently invoked the Defense Product Act to boost the US supply of minerals needed to produce batteries, including cobalt, nickel, and lithium. We’ll be writing about this, as well as the recent provisions in the IIJA that bolster America’s mineral supply chains, in an upcoming brief. 

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