On Monday, U.S. government officials said that over $3 billion of last year’s $1 trillion infrastructure bill would be put towards electric vehicle (EV) battery manufacturing. The funding, which will come from the U.S. Department of Energy, will be utilized to process critical minerals needed for EV batteries (i.e., lithium and cobalt) and develop methods of recycling the batteries at the end of their life cycles. 

Initially, however, the funding will not be used for new mineral mines, as ongoing environmental and legal concerns have hindered their development. U.S. climate advisor Gina McCarthy said the administration is “pretty excited” about this week’s news, adding, “These resources are about battery supply chain, which includes producing, recycling critical minerals without new extraction or mining.”

This week’s announcement is part of the Biden administration’s push to have electric vehicles make up half of all U.S. auto sales by 2030 to hopefully reduce emissions and reduce reliance on other countries, specifically China. 

White House official Mitch Landrieu also cited the current “price hike on oil and gas” caused by the Russian invasion of Ukraine and said it is “important to note that electric vehicles will be cheaper over the long-haul for American families.”

Ford’s General Counsel, Steven Croley, also released a statement saying the automaker approved the decision and added that the investment will “strengthen our domestic battery supply chain, create jobs, and help U.S. manufacturers compete on the global stage.”

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