General Motors (GM) and Glencore enter cobalt supply agreement electric vehicle (EV) batteries

General Motors (GM) and Glencore have announced a multi-year cobalt sourcing agreement. Glencore will supply GM with cobalt for its electric vehicle (EV) batteries from its Murrin Murrin operation in Australia.

Cobalt is an important metal used in the production of electric car batteries and the Australian cobalt will be used in GM’s Ultium battery cathodes. These will be used to power electric vehicles including the Chevrolet Silverado EV, GMC HUMMER EV and Cadillac LYRIQ.

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The agreement builds on a commitment both companies share to create strong, sustainable and resilient supply chains through collective industry and multi-stakeholder platforms.

Both Glencore and General Motors are members of the Responsible Minerals Initiative (RMI), and Glencore’s Murrin Murrin operation is conformant with the OECD-aligned Responsible Minerals Assurance Process.

Jeff Morrison, GM vice president, Global Purchasing and Supply Chain, said: “GM and our suppliers are building an EV ecosystem that is focused on sourcing critical raw materials in a secure sustainable manner.

“Importantly, given the critical role of EVs in reducing the carbon footprint of the transportation sector, this agreement is aligned with our approach to responsible sourcing and supply chain management.”

Cobalt is a metal that makes up just 0.001 percent of the Earth’s crust. It is known for its heat-resistant properties and is added to lithium-ion battery cathodes used in electric vehicles to improve energy density and battery longevity.

Ash Lazenby, Glencore U.S. Cobalt marketer and trader, said: “Future facing commodities like cobalt play a pivotal role in decarbonising energy consumption and the electric vehicle revolution.

“Glencore is already a leading producer, recycler and supplier of these commodities, which underpin our own ambition of achieving net zero total emissions by 2050.”

Cobalt is a metal that makes up only 0.001% of the earth’s crust. It is known for its heat-resistant properties and is added to lithium-ion battery cathodes to improve energy density and battery longevity.

By the end of 2025, GM plans to have the capacity to build one million electric vehicles in North America. It has announced a series of actions to create a new and more secure electric vehicle supply chain to make this happen.

Just last month GM announced it was expanding its North America-focused electric vehicle supply chain with POSCO Chemical in Canada. The two companies are working with the governments of Canada and Quebec to build a new facility in Bécancour, Quebec.

The new $400 million (C$500 million/£305 million/€368 million) facility here will produce cathode active material (CAM) for GM’s Ultium batteries for GM’s range of electric cars.

Ian Osborne
Ian Osborne
Editor-in-Chief at ElectricDrives

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