LG Energy Solution secures access to nickel and cobalt from Australian Mines

LG Energy Solution, one of Tesla’s battery suppliers, has entered into “a binding long form offtake agreement” with Australian Mines Ltd. for nickel and cobalt, which will be supplied in the form of mixed hydroxide precipitate (MPH) from the Sconi Project in North Queensland.

Under the agreement, LG will have access to 71,000 tons of nickel and 7,000 tons of cobalt for 6 years, starting from the end of 2024. That’s enough to produce batteries that could power approximately 1.3 million EVs.

Australian Mines will use the dry stacking method to store filtered tailings. Dry stacking eliminates the use of storage ponds and dams associated with conventional tailings facilities. It’s considered more costly but more environmentally friendly than the traditional way to deal with tailings (mine waste), which is either to dump them directly into streams, or into storage ponds, which runs the risk of future leakage of toxic substances.

In 2020, Australian Mines joined the Initiative for Responsible Mining Assurance (IRMA), and will now participate in a third-party verification and certification process to ensure that it follows a comprehensive best-practice mining standard that addresses environmental and social issues.

LG Energy Solution is on a mission to secure key raw materials for EV batteries. In June, the company made a deal with Queensland Pacific Metals to supply 7,000 tons of nickel and 700 tons of cobalt per year for a decade starting in 2023. Last December, the company inked an agreement with a European subsidiary of Solus Advanced Materials to supply copper foil for 5 years. 

“Securing key raw materials and a responsible battery supply chain has become a critical element in gaining a greater control within the industry, as the demand for electric vehicles worldwide heightened in recent years,” said LG Energy Solution CEO Jong-hyun Kim. “LGES will solidify its position as the world’s leading battery manufacturer through a steady supply of raw materials for EV batteries.”

Source: LG Energy Solution

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