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Another Mining Truth Bomb from John Lee Pettimore - EVs Are Anything But "Green"
EV Mandates Are Absurd
By John Lee Pettimore. Reprinted with Permission.
Ok, lets talk about EVs. How much mining is required to make an EV battery? Lithium brines typically contain less than 0.1% lithium, so that entails some 25,000 pounds of brines to get the 25 pounds of pure lithium needed to fabricate a single battery. #GreenEnergy 🧵
Cobalt ore grades average about 0.1%, thus nearly 30,000 pounds of ore.
Nickel ore grades average about 1%, thus about 6,000 pounds of ore.
Graphite ore is typically 10%, thus about 1,000 pounds per battery.
Copper at about 0.6% in the ore, thus about 25,000 pounds of ore per battery.
In total then, acquiring just these five elements to produce the 1,000-pound EV battery requires mining about 90,000 pounds of ore.
But before we get to any of that ore we must remove the overburden. What is overburden? Its the dirt/rock we must remove to get to the ore body.
Overburden ranges from about 3 to 20 tons of earth removed to access each ton of ore. This means that accessing about 90,000 pounds of ore requires digging and moving between 200,000 and over 1,500,000 pounds of earth or about 500,000 pounds per battery.
Great now that we are into the ore body now what? Now we have to haul it, crush it, run it through ball mills and chemicals in order to get the final product. This is a picture of typical ball mills used to further crush the rock.
Before we begin the mining process we need drills, shovels, haul trucks, support equipment explosives and manpower. Millions of gallons of fuel, oils and coolants, because without these there is no #GreenEnergy mining.
Analyses show that manufacturing a single battery, one capable of holding energy that is equivalent to one barrel of oil, entails processes that use the energy equivalent of 100 barrels of oil.
And if the batteries are manufactured in Asia (as 60% of the world’s batteries are now), more than 60% of the electricity to do so is coal-fired. In 2022, China produced a record amount of coal at 4.496 billion tonnes, which is nine percent more than the year before.
Non-battery, electrical systems in an EV use some 300% more overall copper compared with a conventional automobile. How much more mining do we have to do for that?
So there you have it. How “green” is an EV? Not very green at all, yet governments around the world are pushing mandates forcing us all to drive one.