Bulletins

INDUSTRY BULLETIN: The world watches Paris and Provincial Governments unveil clean technology plans - but where will the critical raw materials come from?

December 3, 2015


Avalon Rare Metals Inc. is pleased to provide an update on a few recent national and international initiatives related to the ongoing “Clean Technology Revolution.” Recent policy initiatives in Canada will likely result in increased funding for clean technology innovation, which will lead to increased demand for critical materials needed in clean technology such as lithium. Developing supply chains will need companies such as Avalon to provide the necessary critical raw materials to achieve governments’ ambitious policy goals.

The world is closely watching the United Nations Conference on Climate Change ongoing until December 11, 2015 in Paris. The expected outcome of this conference is a new international agreement to control carbon emissions. It is anticipated that there will be agreement around the urgent need for more efficient and cleaner energy generation and reduced reliance on the burning of fossil fuels. Prior to the conference, two Canadian provinces, Alberta and Ontario, unveiled their strategies to combat greenhouse gas emission and to develop a low-carbon economy.

In Alberta, Premier Rachel Notley outlined the province’s Climate Leadership Plan and in Ontario, Premier Kathleen Wynne presented a somewhat similar Climate Change Strategy. While there are some differences, one can note that both of these strategies focus on expanding renewable energy initiatives such as wind power and solar power, as well as increased use of hybrid and electric vehicles and other energy efficient technologies. All of these technologies rely on energy storage, which is being enabled by advances in lithium ion battery technology.

Battery expert Jay Whitacre, an investor at Carnegie Mellon, states, “If you are serious about eliminating combustion of fossil fuels to power anything, you can’t do it without [energy] storage.” There remains an impending supply crisis surrounding the availability of critical elements such as lithium, as outlined by David Abraham, author of “The Elements of Power,” who calls on world leaders to address the pending shortage of critical elements needed for clean technologies in his recent Op-Ed in the New York Times: “The Next Resource Shortage?.” Limited investment in new production in recent years and long timelines to bring new production to market signal looming supply shortages and higher prices as demand outstrips supply.

This is good news for aspiring producers like Avalon positioned with advanced lithium projects in favourable political jurisdictions such as Ontario.

Rapid development of electric car technology, enabled by lower cost and more efficient lithium ion batteries, is being led in North America by Tesla Motors, Inc. Tesla is building a lithium ion battery “Gigafactory” in Nevada to produce rechargeable batteries for its future electric cars and the “Powerwall” battery for home energy storage. It has also committed to sourcing the critical materials for the Gigafactory in North America. New supply sources will need to be developed to serve their needs as well as other battery makers around the world. Avalon’s Separation Rapids Lithium Project could become part of the solution.

Policymakers around the world keen on implementing the Clean Technology Revolution would be wise to consider: Where will all the critical raw materials come from?

For questions or feedback, please email Avalon at ir@avalonraremetals.com.

About Avalon Rare Metals Inc.
Avalon Rare Metals Inc. (TSX & NYSE MKT: AVL) is a Canadian mineral development company specializing in niche market metals and minerals with growing demand in new technology. The Company has three advanced stage projects, all 100%-owned, providing investors with exposure to lithium, tin and indium, as well as rare earth elements, tantalum, niobium, and zirconium. Avalon is currently focusing on its Separation Rapids Lithium Project, Kenora, ON and its East Kemptville Tin-Indium Project, Yarmouth, NS. Social responsibility and environmental stewardship are corporate cornerstones.