By 2030, analysts believe Europe will no longer need to import electric vehicle batteries from China, provided it keeps up with the American president’s $369 billion (£298 billion) environmental subsidy binge.
According to a report by Transport & Environment, which advocates for renewable energy, the European Union is on course to create more li-ion batteries by 2027 to increase supply and end reliance on China for the production of batteries as well as the processing and refinement of battery metals. By 2030, projects in Europe may meet more than one-half of the refined lithium requirements.
Currently, Europe doesn’t have any lithium refinery, and some 90% of the global processing of battery metals is done in eastern Asia. However, ongoing refining projects in Germany as well as in France are anticipated to improve European chances, and a new European Union rule on critical raw materials is intended to ensure that they meet stringent standards on the environment.
Whereas the European Union has pledged to eliminate combustion engines starting in 2035, Britain has prohibited sales of new gasoline and diesel vehicles beginning in 2030.
Although authorities have been availing additional tax benefits to solar companies, the flagship Inflation Reduction Act by the American president has drawn greener investments into the United States and placed pressure on Britain and the European Union to take action.
According to the T&E analysis, by 2027, two-thirds of the European need for cathodes for use in batteries may be met on the continent thanks to initiatives such as Northvolt and Umicore in Sweden and Poland, respectively.
The authors of the study cautioned, however, that businesses might still decide to relocate intended European projects to the United States if project owners are lured by the tax advantages as well as other incentives offered by the IRA for localizing battery supplies in the United States. Therefore, if Europe wants to avoid losing the proposed battery facilities and related jobs to America, it must increase its financial contributions. T&E proposed the establishment of a special European Union fund to support investments in EVs and batteries, as well as renewable energy sources.
The UK government, according to Tony Danker’s statement, is underinvested in the green economy and is now far behind the United States and the European Union. He added that the United States and the European Union are investing more money and developing more sophisticated strategies for supporting low-carbon projects than the UK is.
As battery production is conducted domestically, manufacturers such as Nikola Corporation (NASDAQ: NKLA) could gradually see production costs go down, and these reductions could be extended to customers of their EVs.
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