An official thousand-page report for the Finnish Government is warning that the world does not have enough lithium and cobalt to deliver the batteries needed for future power needs.
The Geological Survey of Finland Circular Economy Solutions report assessed the extra capacity required for alternative energy electrical power systems in order to completely replace fossil fuels. It addresses the challenges around the ambitious task of phasing out fossil fuels (oil, gas, & coal) that are currently used in vehicle Internal Combustion Engine technology (ICE) and for electrical power generation.
It has concluded that, looking at a 2050 timescale, that, “replacing the existing fossil fuel powered system… using renewable technologies, such as solar panels or wind turbines, will not be possible for the entire global human population. There is simply just not enough time, nor resources to do this by the current target set by the World’s most influential nations.”
The report warns that while, “in theory” there are enough global reserves of nickel and lithium if they are exclusively used to produce batteries for electric vehicles, there is not enough cobalt, and more will need to be discovered. It also says all the new batteries will need to be regularly replaced which is, “unlikely to be practical, which suggests the whole EV battery solution may need to be re-thought and a new solution is developed that is not so mineral intensive.”
You can read the full report (including a three-page executive summary) here.
(Picture – Yay Images)