Daily News Wrap-Up: Lithium Price Drop Effect on EVs

Electric Vehicle Sales Surge 81% YoY in Q1 2023, 349,676 Units Sold

April 5, 2023


Lithium carbonate prices, the primary component used in batteries, have seen a considerable drop over the last couple of months, raising hopes among industry stakeholders that affordable electric vehicles would attract more customers to the segment. The price of the key ingredient has dropped from ~$73,000 per mt in January to ~$34,000 per mt in March.

Electric vehicle (EV) sales in India reached 349,676 units in the first quarter of 2022, a year-over-year (YoY) increase of 81% compared to 192,565 units sold in the same period last year. Sales increased by 2% compared to 343,485 units sold in the previous quarter. EVs accounted for 6% of overall automobile sales, according to data released by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways.

Google has signed a power purchase agreement (PPA) for 150 MW with Denmark-based Orsted, which will supply the power from its 268 MW Helena Wind Farm in Texas in the United States for the next 15 years. The project, commissioned in mid-2022, provides low-cost electricity to the South ERCOT service territory, enough to power an estimated 90,000 homes. The PPA is the first agreement between Google and Orsted in the U.S. and the second agreement globally.

Vibrant Energy has signed a deal with the Denmark-based wind turbine manufacturer Vestas for the supply of 36 V155 3.6 MW wind turbines. The turbines will be supplied to Vibrant Energy’s two wind projects in India. Vestas is expected to deliver the turbines starting the fourth quarter of 2023, while the commissioning will be complete by the second quarter of 2024.

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency has invited expressions of interest for the first round of Community Batteries Funding of up to AU $120 million (~$81.2 million) to deploy community batteries across Australia. The Community Batteries Funding Program is expected to facilitate the installation of community batteries nationwide to reduce energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions and alleviate strain on the power grid.

Researchers from Helmholtz Institute Ulm and Karlsruhe Institute of Technology have devised a low-cost and eco-friendly lithium recycling technique to recover up to 70% of lithium from battery waste without the use of harsh chemicals, high temperatures, or pre-sorting of materials. Currently, battery waste recycling primarily focuses on recovering nickel, cobalt, copper, aluminum, and steel, with lithium recovery remaining expensive and unprofitable.

The Central Electricity Regulatory Commission has directed all power exchanges to redesign their bidding software to allow members to quote prices within a specified range for different types of contracts. The Commission said that redesigning the bidding software would reduce the cost of power for buyers while also providing an opportunity for high-cost generators and willing buyers to participate in the High Price Day Ahead Market market.

Check out the Top Headlines from Indian Renewable Sector in March 2023 in Month in a Minute