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Tesla Needs Lithium, Elon Musk Suggests It Might Get Into the Mining Business

Tesla Needs Lithium, Elon Musk Suggests It Might Get Into the Mining Business

Tesla Needs Lithium

Tesla Needs Lithium, Elon Musk Suggests It Might Get Into the Mining Business
Tesla Needs Lithium, Elon Musk Suggests It Might Get Into the Mining Business

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Tesla CEO Elon Musk lamented the rising cost of lithium in a recent tweet. He even suggested that Tesla might get into mining to help solve the shortage of key raw materials in rechargeable lithium-ion electric car batteries.

Tesla-as-miner has far-reaching implications for the electric car industry.
Will shutting down long-term lithium supplies become a strategic imperative for the industry?
Will other car companies look to integrate into the electric car battery supply chain?
These are long term questions…

“The price of lithium has gone to insane levels!” Musk tweeted on April 8.

He has a point. Standard lithium prices are around $78,000 per metric ton, up nearly 80% since the beginning of the year.

The price of the basket of battery materials tracked by Barron is up 60% year-to-date, theoretically adding nearly $2,000 to the price of an electric vehicle.

However, most battery materials are purchased under contracts.
Most of the commodity prices shown are spot prices.
When the spot price is greater than the contract, this is a sign that the contract prices will move higher.

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“Tesla may have to get into direct mining and refining on a large scale,” Musk said, adding in a subsequent tweet, “We have some great ideas to mine and refine lithium.”

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