American Resources Policy Network
Promoting the development of American mineral resources.
  • U.S. Department of Energy Announces Federal Grants to “Supercharge” U.S. EV Battery and Electric Grid Supply Chains

    The global push towards net zero carbon marches on, and with sales of EVs continuing to soar even as prices rise, analysts suggest that the world could be nearing a critical electric vehicle sales tipping point, when volatile adoption trends are overtaken by mainstream demand.” 

    With skyrocketing demand, the mineral intensity of the green energy transition and supply chain challenges associated with our over-reliance on adversary nations, most notably China, has finally resonated with stakeholders. The passage of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law in the summer of 2021 represented an important step towards decoupling U.S. critical mineral supply chains from adversary nations.  Others have since followed.

    Today marks another key step: As part of the implementation of the 2021 infrastructure law, the U.S. Department of Energy announced the first round of funding under the Act for projects aimed at “supercharging”  U.S. manufacturing of batteries for electric vehicles and electric grid.

    Awardees — a total of 20 companies — will receive a combined $2.8 billion “to build and expand commercial scale facilities in 12 states to extract and process lithium, graphite and other battery materials, manufacture components, and demonstrate new approaches, including manufacturing components from recycled materials.”

    According to the Department of Energy announcement, recipients will match the federal funds to leverage a total of more than $9 billion “to boost American production of clean energy technology, create good-paying jobs, and support President Biden’s national goals for electric vehicles to make up half of all new vehicle sales by 2030 and to transition to a net-zero emissions economy by 2050.”

    The supported projects span the entire value chain, with funding going towards:

    • Developing enough battery-grade lithium to supply approximately 2 million EVs annually
    • Developing enough battery-grade graphite to supply approximately 1.2 million EVs annually
    • Producing enough battery-grade nickel to supply approximately 400,000 EVs annually
    • Installing the first large-scale, commercial lithium electrolyte salt (LiPF6) production facility in the United States
    • Developing an electrode binder facility capable of supplying 45% of the anticipated domestic demand for binders for EV batteries in 2030
    • Creating the first commercial scale domestic silicon oxide production facilities to supply anode materials for an estimated 600,000 EV batteries annually
    • Installing the first lithium iron phosphate cathode facility in the United States

    The map provides a snapshot of anticipated project locations:


    More details and individual project information can be accessed here.

    According to DoE, the department “anticipates moving quickly on additional funding opportunities to continue to fill gaps in and strengthen the domestic battery supply chain,” and ARPN will continue to keep tabs on these efforts.


  • State-Level Public-Private Cooperation to Bolster Critical Mineral Supply Chains: A Look at Michigan

    At ARPN, we have long been spotlighting federal policy initiatives to bolster our critical mineral supply chains. Meanwhile, often considered policy laboratories, the individual states are also not sitting idly by, and it’s time to feature some of their efforts.

    With the EV revolution fueling much of the skyrocketing demand for the “battery criticals” lithium, cobalt, graphite, nickel and manganese, it is only fitting that our first example takes us Michigan, home to Detroit, the cradle of the U.S. automobile industry.

    As Tim Higgins reports for the Wall Street Journal, the State of Michigan earlier this month approved a more than $200 million grant for Our Next Energy Inc.’s (ONE) planned EV battery factory in Van Buren Township, Michigan.  The company, an EV battery startup spearheaded by a former leader of Apple Inc.’s secretive car project, plans to invest $1.6 billion into the project, which is slated to be fully operational by the end of 2027 and have the capacity make battery cells for about 200,000 EVs annually.

    The push to build out a comprehensive domestic EV battery supply chain, as followers of ARPN well know, received a jolt of energy with the passage of the federal Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) and its domestic sourcing requirements for EV credits.

    While the U.S. automotive industry has largely focused on lithium-ion battery cells, ONE, according to Higgins, aims to ultimately produce 20 gigawatt hours, amounting to the equivalent of battery packs for about 200,000 vehicles each year by focusing on lithium iron phosphate (or lithium ferro-phosphate, LFP) cells, which, while said to have a shorter range than its lithium-ion peer, is also considered to be less volatile and less expensive.

    ONE’s goal is to also build a battery pack with a more than 600-mile range at a significantly lower price point for the cells making up the pack.

    The State of Michigan’s $236.6 million in state funding for the project include

    • A $200 million Critical Industry Program performance-based grant through the Strategic Outreach and Attraction Reserve (“SOAR”) Fund
    • A $15 million Jobs for Michigan Investment Fund Loan
    • State Essential Services Assessment Exemption valued at $21.6 million

    In a statement released on October 5, 2022, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said of the project:

    “Our Next Energy’s $1.6 billion investment creating 2,112 jobs in Van Buren Township will build on our economic momentum and secure the future of mobility and electrification right here in Michigan. This innovative, Michigan-made company is on the cutting-edge of battery technology, and the work they’re doing will increase the range of electric vehicles to over 600 miles on a single charge. 

    With this new gigafactory, we will continue bringing the supply chain of electric vehicles, chips, and batteries home to Michigan and the USA while creating a sustainable, clean energy economy. I am proud that Democrats and Republicans in Michigan came together to build up our economic development toolkit and empowered our state to compete for every project and every job.”

    States like Texas, Georgia,Kansas and Oklahoma have also attracted battery makers as automakers scramble to lock down supplies and policy stakeholders work to create frameworks conducive to attracting investment into these critical industries.

    In the coming weeks and months, ARPN will continue to feature more examples of state level public-private cooperation or formalized public private partnerships (PPPs) to sustainably strengthen domestic critical mineral supply chains.

  • Time to Address the “Gaping Hole” in America’s Efforts to Secure Critical Mineral Supply Chains

     “The historic shift to electric vehicles will give the U.S. a fresh chance to achieve energy independence, but it will require complex strategic moves that won’t pay off for years,” writes Joann Muller in a new piece for Axios. A look at the numbers reveals that despite a noticeable push towards strengthening U.S. supply chains (we’ve featured [...]
  • The DPA in the Context of Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine and Chinese Strategy – “Back to the Future”?

    Stressing that the “The United States depends on unreliable foreign sources for many of the strategic and critical materials necessary for the clean energy,” specifically for EV and large capacity batteries, U.S. President Joe Biden invoked the Defense Production Act (DPA) to accelerate buildout of domestic supply chains via Presidential Determination earlier this month. While, as Reuter columnist Andy [...]
  • Critical Minerals Challenge Could Delay E-Mobility, Automaker Says

    As the global push for net carbon zero accelerates in the wake of last year’s UN Global Climate Summit in Glasgow, another leading automaker draws attention to the critical raw materials challenge: In a recent interview with German paper Die Zeit, Mercedes-Benz Group (previously Daimler AG) Chief Executive Ola Kaellenius warned that EV battery raw material scarcity [...]
  • Another Wrinkle in the EV Race – To Address Semiconductor Shortage, Let’s Begin at the Beginning

    Over the past few weeks, we dove into the materials challenges associated with the accelerating EV revolution, outlining that while general awareness of immense mineral intensity of the green energy transition is growing, misconceptions in terms of how to address the challenge persist, with too many still subscribing to the notion that we can recycle, [...]
  • NMA’s Rich Nolan: Mining Policy Must Be Foundation of Push to Win EV Revolution

    In a recent op-ed, National Mining Association president and CEO Rich Nolan argues that while the United States still has a shot at winning the EV revolution, it is currently not only not in the lead, but is rather “being lapped.” In the lead – not surprisingly to any of ARPN’s followers — is China, which [...]
  • Canada Takes Steps Towards A North American Battery Supply Chain

    Canada is currently in the process of positioning itself as “a cornerstone of the North American battery supply chain,” writes James Frith in a recent piece for Bloomberg. Pointing to two battery cell manufacturers choosing Canada as a future site of operation —UK-headquartered Britishvolt and Canadian-headquartered Stromvolt — Frith argues that “Canada is now on course to create [...]
  • To Lead in EV Revolution, We Must Ramp Up U.S. Mineral Production

    “The U.S. has for too long ceded control of the front end of our manufacturing supply chains to foreign nations, assuming the materials we require will be there when we need them,” writes National Mining Association president and CEO Rich Nolan in a recent Boston Herald piece. In doing so, the U.S. has allowed China [...]
  • Mining Industry Expert: “A Serious Conversation About Infrastructure and Clean Energy Must Start at the Beginning of the Supply Chain. It’s Time to Boost Domestic Supply of Copper”

    As was to be expected, President Joe Biden used his State of the Union address to both chambers of Congress to tout his American Jobs Plan, which has been billed as comprehensive package to make the economy more productive through investments in infrastructure, education, work force development and fighting climate change. And while nobody can [...]