Heavyweights in EV Industry Unite Over Pending Supply Chain Crisis
Some of the biggest names in the U.S. automotive industry are joining with battery makers, electric vehicle start-ups and lithium producers to pressure the U.S. government for greater focus on a looming supply chain crisis in the lithium-ion battery industry.
General Motors, Ford and Tesla have formed a coalition with battery maker Panasonic, lithium miner Albemarle and others in the energy storage and EV industry to lobby policymakers on everything from raw materials processing and refining to component and battery pack manufacturing.
Group formed to promote U.S. battery industry
The Coalition for American Battery Independence was launched on May 24 to increase production of battery materials and increase battery manufacturing capacity in the United States.
The group, known as CABI, hired Washington lobbying firm Boundary Stone Partners to pressure Congress to pass incentives for manufacturing and processing. The group would also like the president to use the Defense Production Act and other purchasing authority to help the U.S. battery industry catch up with global rivals.
Domestic battery supply critical to secure America’s energy future
Pressure will continue to mount under aggressive transition mandates from the Biden administration. President Biden wants half of all vehicles sold in the U.S. to be electric by 2030, but the U.S. has only about 5% of the manufacturing capacity needed to hit that target.
For the sake of the nation’s energy and climate security, it is critical for the United States to bring battery materials and manufacturing capacity back to its own shores, CABI says.
Demand for batteries will skyrocket over the coming decades, industry watchers say, and if the U.S. wants to control its own energy destiny, the country will need a secure, resilient supply chain for critical minerals and other components.
“If we don't do this, if we don’t as a country invest in our supply chain, it will go to the lowest-cost country, which is China," says Michael O’Kronley, CEO of Ascend Elements, a battery recycling company.