About that Musk mine
This is quoted from an article that is the most comprehensive reporting I’ve found about this.
(In mid-January), however, a mining company with a project in much earlier stages of development, Talon Metals Corp., announced it already has an agreement to supply the electric car giant Tesla with nickel for batteries.
Though it’s still too early to tell if the tentative deal will translate into broader political support, environmental groups and Native tribes have so far been skeptical of, and in some cases outright opposed to, what’s known as the Tamarack project…
The company, which has Canadian ties but is headquartered in the British Virgin Islands, is still working to apply for Minnesota mining permits and environmental review. Talon could submit a mine plan to state regulators within a year, but plans so far described by the company are preliminary. The company owns a majority of what it calls the Tamarack Nickel Project in a joint venture with the British and Australian mining giant Rio Tinto…
Yet Paula Maccabee, attorney for the environmental nonprofit WaterLegacy, which has opposed PolyMet, said Talon hasn’t given enough information yet on the size, scope and details of the mine and its potential hydrology for people to truly evaluate the project, and said the Tesla deal at this point amounts to a “press release.”
Here’s Talon’s website. Its shares are traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange, and as of this writing (the afternoon of Feb. 1) are going for 54 cents per share. Apparently news of the Tesla deal hasn’t made investors rich just yet.
To my mind, the big red flag right now is the involvement of Rio Tinto. It’s a huge mining multinational, like Glencore (the real force behind PolyMet), and Antofagasta (ditto regarding the unfortunately not-quite-dead-yet Twin Metals). And it has a similarly awful record on both labor and environmental issues.
A minor, in context, but interesting matter, if things go much further, will be to see if the MPCA and/or Minnesota DNR have learned anything at all from their PolyMet permitting fiascos.
If you go to the Science Daily website now and then, and look under energy technology, there’s almost always new stuff about research in battery technology, especially using carbon. Most ideas won’t make it to being industrialized, but some will. And cut the ground from under those who claim we need environmentally destructive mining for the sake of purported “energy independence.”
Added Feb. 5: Well, what do you know? “Racist Mining Company Reports It Is Very Sexist, and Also Racist” (Gizmodo)
Added Feb. 6: A reader alerted me to a drilling report. We’re definitely talking sulfide mining.
Comment from Mike: Batteries are close to the limit of energy density that can be chemically achieved. The more energy dense something is, the more flammable and explosive it is when something goes wrong. Thunderf00t has debunked several claims about super batteries:
The mine is about 30 miles from my house. Talon was test drilling for several years with not much to show for it until last year when they hit some really high grade cores. I was hoping they would find nothing and go away, but now it looks like they will actually start digging. And the toxic runoff will soon follow.
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