U.S. Department of Energy announced an allocation of up to $3.5 billion on Wednesday. This funding, derived from the infrastructure law signed by President Joe Biden in 2021, is geared towards expanding facilities for critical minerals, next-generation technologies, and lithium-based technologies, among other key elements of the battery supply chain.
U.S. Secretary of Energy, Jennifer Granholm, emphasized the strategic importance of positioning the United States at the forefront of meeting the escalating demand for advanced batteries. Granholm stated, “Positioning the United States front and center to meet the growing demand for advanced batteries is how we boost our global competitiveness, maintain and create good-paying jobs, and strengthen our clean energy economy.”
This initiative comes in the wake of China's dominant position in the global electric vehicle (EV) battery supply chain. The recent limitation imposed by China on the anode material graphite in October has added an element of uncertainty to the segment.
In a letter seen by Reuters, two Democratic U.S. senators urged the Energy Department earlier this month to take proactive steps to enhance U.S. battery manufacturing and invest in next-generation battery research. Their concerns were rooted in China's overwhelming influence in the industry and the potential impact of export controls.