Surge in electric vehicle battery production sees foreign mining companies look to Finland for new precious metal sources
The exponential growth in the global production of electric and hybrid vehicles has created a corresponding surge in demand for the precious metals used in the vehicles’ batteries. Lithium, cobalt, nickel and copper, as well as graphite, are key components of electric vehicle batteries. Supplies of these raw materials are dwindling in their primary areas of extraction (cobalt – Congo, lithium – South America, graphite – China), forcing mining companies to search elsewhere, including Finland. The number of permits granted by the Finnish Safety and Chemicals Agency for ore exploration doubled in 2017 and one Finnish mining company is looking to establish Europe’s largest lithium mine in the south of the country. Finland’s national drill core archive in Loppi, just over an hour’s drive north from Helsinki, serves as a crucial starting point in the ore exploration process. The archive houses hundreds of thousands of samples from across the country, weighing around 10 million kilograms in total. Geologists from around the world are visiting the archive to search for new sources of battery raw materials.
Link to original article (in Finnish): https://yle.fi/uutiset/3-10107436