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Scarcely ahead of geopolitics: today's race for critical minerals for batteries

"Whatever they choose, Western companies—and governments—cannot be starry-eyed on this issue," Jessica Clarence of ASPI warns tech companies competing against Chinese counterparts.  Whoever loses access to critical minerals for batteries like cobalt and lithium, "may also lose the energy—and tech—race."


In 1980 US PRESIDENT Jimmy Carter established the Carter Doctrine, asserting the right of the United States to protect strategic interests in the Middle East. The doctrine reflected the reality that oil sustained the US (and world) economy, and without it economies would collapse. ‘Energy geopolitics’—competition between states for energy security—reflected this worldwide resource race; a race as relevant today as it was in the 20th century. Today we’re approaching an era where clean energy technology outstrips fossil fuels. This means that there will again be an energy race—but the essential component will be the humble battery. Western tech companies and their Chine…

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