There’s a mad rush to build more EV plants, but where are the minerals? – Mish Talk

The auto industry has committed billions of dollars to EV projects, resulting in the largest auto plant construction boom in decades.

The U.S. auto industry is entering one of its biggest factory construction booms in recent years, a cost increase fueled largely by a shift to electric vehicles and new federal subsidies aimed at boosting U.S. battery production.

The 11-month total adds up to $37 billion in new auto plant spending in 2021, when several new projects have been revealed in states like Tennessee, Kentucky and Michigan. The center said the annual figure was up from $9 billion in 2017 and more than eight times more than two decades ago.

Automakers’ race to fill their lineups with electric vehicles is the biggest driver behind factory spending. The federal climate package was adopted in 2022 It will further accelerate US investment by providing tens of billions of dollars to subsidize EV and battery factory projects, as well as facilities for the processing of battery materials such as lithium and graphite.

Some foreign auto companies are targeting the US for expansion, compensating for weakness in other global markets. Meanwhile, newly capitalized EV startups including Rivian Automotive Inc. are developing manufacturing capabilities.

Rivian, which started car production in Illinois in 2021, has committed to opening a second factory in Georgia in 2026. Hyundai Motor Co. also announced plans to build a $5.5 billion factory complex in the state.

The Inflation Reduction Act further accelerated efforts to increase domestic production. It offers billions of dollars in manufacturer incentives for domestic battery production and limits the federal tax credit for EV buyers to vehicles with batteries and their mineral components from North America or trade-friendly countries.

Last year, General Motors Co. opened a new battery plant with LG Energy Solutions in Ohio and is developing two more plants in Tennessee and Michigan.

Panasonic Holdings Corp. said this summer it will build a $4 billion battery factory in De Soto, Kan. Ford, Toyota Motor Corp and Jeep owner Stellantis NV also have multibillion-dollar battery plant projects underway.

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