On Monday, the US government allocated more than $3 billion in infrastructure funding to finance electric vehicle (EV) battery manufacturing. The US Department of Energy will allocate these funds from the $1 trillion infrastructure bill that was signed by President Biden last year.
By 2030, Biden wants half of all new vehicles to be electronic, with an aim to boost unionized manufacturing jobs in important election battleground states, fend off Chinese competition in a fast-growing market, and cut climate-changing carbon emissions. Moreover, the administration is positioning the measures as a means to cut the long-term inflation pressures caused by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
However, these funds will not be used to develop new domestic mines to supply lithium, nickel, cobalt and other high-demand minerals needed for batteries. To support the mining and processing of those minerals, Biden invoked the Cold War-era Defense Production Act in March.
Biden’s national climate adviser Gina McCarthy said, “These resources are about battery supply chain, which includes producing, recycling critical minerals without new extraction or mining”.
These fundings are said to help establish and retrofit battery factories. Additionally, the infrastructure law allocates billions of dollars to purchase electric buses and install chargers for electric vehicles.