- EV battery materials startup EVelution Energy is set to build the U.S.’s first first solar-powered cobalt processing facility in Arizona, the company announced Monday.
- The Yuma County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved the project, which will produce enough battery-grade cobalt sulfate to help power up to 470,000 EVs per year.
- The company plans to break ground on the facility next year and have it fully operational by 2026. The plant will also supply clean energy to the surrounding agricultural community.
Other companies in the battery materials space are working to more sustainably recycle and process critical minerals. Battery recycler Li-Cycle is developing a facility in New York state to recover metals with fewer emissions.
The Department of Energy loaned Li-Cycle hundreds of millions of dollars for its facility, highlighting the climate-conscious processes the company plans to integrate. For manufacturers and federal agencies alike, sustainability in manufacturing processes is a growing consideration as the country works to bolster domestic manufacturing while undergoing a green transition.
“The development of a domestic EV battery-material production facility, particularly a solar-powered facility, is of key importance to the United States,” President for EVelution Energy Navaid Alam said in a statement. “Our new production facility will bring back domestic infrastructure ... and decrease our reliance on other countries for critical EV battery materials.”
China currently dominates processing of key lithium-ion battery materials.
EVelution has begun securing supply agreements for its facility. It signed a memorandum of understanding in October with commodity trading company Trafigura for a supply of raw materials.