Investing in the Energy Transition: March 2024

April 1, 2024

ETF Performance

Copper was the standout performer in March, with the Global X Copper Miners ETF rising 17.91%. Uranium and Clean Tech also rose on the month.

Check out our full database of Energy Transition ETFs.

Company News: Electric Vehicles

Tesla evacuates its Germany plant. Musk blames ‘eco-terrorists’ for suspected arson

March 5th | TSLA

These are either the dumbest eco-terrorists on Earth or they’re puppets of those who don’t have good environmental goals.Elon Musk, Tesla CEO

  • The company halted production at its factory outside of Berlin and sent workers home after suspected arson at a nearby high-voltage pylon caused power failures throughout the region.
  • Andre Thierig, who manages 12,500 staff at the Grünheide Gigafactory, near Berlin, said it would take several days before production would be back up and running. He said the outage would cost “in the high nine-digit euro range,” meaning more than $100 million.

Article: NPR

Rivian Introduces R2, R3, and R3X Built on New Midsize Platform

March 7th| RIVN
Rivian R2. Photo: Rivian

  • R2 is Rivian’s all-new midsize SUV delivering a combination of performance, capability and utility in a five-seat package optimized for big adventures and everyday use. 
  • R3 is a midsize crossover that is tidy on dimensions but delivers big in terms of performance, off-road capability, passenger comfort, and storage.
  • R3X is a performance variant of R3 offering even more dynamic abilities both on and off road.
  • Pricing for R2 is expected to start around $45,000, and R3 will be priced below R2, making Rivian vehicles more accessible to more people.

Read Article: Barrons: Rivian’s R2 Is a Force for the Stock

Press Release: Rivian

Rivian pauses construction of its $5 billion electric truck plant in Georgia

March 7th| RIVN

“Our Georgia site remains really important to us. It’s core to the scaling across all these vehicles, between R2, R3 and R3X. And we’re so appreciative of all the partnership we’ve had there.” –RJ Scaringe, Rivian CEO

  • California-based Rivian had planned to start building its new R2 midsize SUVs at the Georgia site east of Atlanta. State and local governments offered an incentive package as large as $1.5 billion, one of the largest ever offered for an American auto plant.

  • Production of the R2 will instead begin at Rivian’s existing plant in Normal, lllinois.

Article: AP News

Rivals Nissan and Honda sign MoU on EV partnership

March 15th| HMC, NSANY

Emerging players are very aggressive and are making inroads at incredible speed. We cannot win the competition as long as we stick to conventional wisdom and a traditional approach Makoto Uchida, CEO Nissan Motors

  • Japanese auto rivals Nissan Motors and Honda Motors are considering a strategic partnership to collaborate on producing key components for electric vehicles and artificial intelligence in automotive software platforms
  • The two companies signed a non-binding memorandum of understanding to look at areas of potential collaboration but have yet to determine the scope, Honda President Toshihiro Mibe said.

Read Article: Reuters

Li-Cycle Closes $75 Million Strategic Investment from Glencore

March 27th | LICY, GLNCY

“We are pleased to close the $75 million investment from Glencore, which enhances our liquidity position and is a key interim step in our funding strategy. As we continue our comprehensive review process, we look forward to expanding our existing long-term, strategic partnership with Glencore and are excited about the future opportunities for Li-Cycle. We remain focused on our key priorities of driving down costs through our cash preservation plan, reviewing our go-forward strategy for the paused Rochester Hub, and evaluating additional financing and strategic alternatives. We also continue to work closely with the U.S. Department of Energy on a conditional commitment for a loan of up to $375 million.Ajay Kochhar, CEO Li-Cycle

  • This is the completion of a previously announced $75 million investment in Li-Cycle through the purchase of a senior secured convertible
  • The note has a five-year term and is convertible into LICY common shares at an initial conversion price of $0.53 per share.

Article: Li-Cycle

Company News: Green Energy

Iberdrola launches an offer to acquire remaining 18.4% of its US subsidiary Avangrid

March 7th | AGR, IBDRY
  • Iberdrola has launched an offer to acquire 18.4% of the capital of its US subsidiary, Avangrid at $34.25 per share.
  • Iberdrola already owns approximately 81.6% of Avangrid.
  • This price represents an investment of $2.48 billion for Iberdrola – about €2.28 billion at the current exchange rate.
  • The objective of this transaction is to increase exposure to the networks business in the United States at a key time for Iberdrola, which wants to grow in markets with high credit ratings and in regulated businesses such as networks.
  • Headquartered in Connecticut, Avangrid currently has $44 billion in assets and operations in 24 U.S. states.
  • In 2023, the company posted adjusted gross operating profit (EBITDA) of $2.43 billion, up from $2.246 billion a year earlier.

Press Release: Iberdrola

South Fork Wind becomes America’s first utility-scale offshore wind farm

March 15th | DNNGY, ES

Photo: South Fork Wind

We’re thrilled to celebrate the completion of the South Fork project, which will deliver 130 megawatts of wind energy to Long Island. That’s enough to power more than 70,000 homes and businesses! Today is further proof that America’s clean energy transition is not a dream for a distant future – it’s happening right here and now. Deb Haaland, U.S. Secretary of the Interior

  • All 12 of South Fork Wind’s turbines are installed and the wind farm is delivering clean power to the local Long Island electric grid, with commissioning in its final stage. 
  • The renewable energy is generated roughly 35 miles off the coast of Montauk, and will eliminate up to six million tons of carbon emissions over the life of the project, the equivalent of taking 60,000 cars off the road for the next twenty years.
  • South Fork Wind is a joint venture between Ørsted and Eversource.

Press Release: Ørsted

FT: Bill Gates’ TerraPower plans to build first US next-generation nuclear plant

March 19th

TerraPower, which has raised almost $1bn in private funding, signed an agreement with Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation in December to explore using Natrium reactors to generate electricity and produce hydrogen in the United Arab Emirates. The company has secured pledges from the US government to provide up to $2bn to complete work at TerraPower’s first plant in Kemmerer, Wyoming.FT

  • TerraPower’s Natrium reactor, which is developed in partnership with GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy, is slightly larger than most SMRs with a power capacity of 345MWe. It also contains a molten salt-based energy storage system, which can boost the system’s output to 500Mwe for more than five and a half hours when required.
  • Construction work near the site of a coal power plant will begin in June regardless of whether the company received a permit from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission by that date. Much of the initial building work related to non-nuclear activity due to the innovative design of the Natrium reactor.
  • TerraPower plans to bring the plant online in 2030.

Read Article: FT

Biden-Harris Administration Announces $6 Billion for Industrial Decarbonization

March 25th

Thanks to President Biden’s industrial strategy, DOE is making the largest investment in industrial decarbonization in the history of the United States. These investments will slash emissions from these difficult-to-decarbonize sectors and ensure American businesses and American workers remain at the forefront of the global economy.  Jennifer M. Granholm, U.S. Secretary of Energy

Press Release: U.S. Department of Energy

Biden administration will lend $1.5B to restart Michigan nuclear power plant, a first in the US

March 28th

Nuclear power is our single largest source of carbon-free electricity, directly supporting 100,000 jobs across the country and hundreds of thousands more indirectly Jennifer M. Granholm, U.S. Secretary of Energy

  • The federal government will provide a $1.5 billion loan to restart a nuclear power plant in southwestern Michigan
  • Holtec International acquired the 800-megawatt Palisades plant in 2022 with plans to dismantle it. But now the emphasis is on restarting it by late 2025, following support from the state of Michigan and the Biden administration.
  • The Palisades plant is along Lake Michigan, a two-hour drive from Chicago. A Michigan utility, CMS Energy, owned it from 1971 until the plant was sold to Louisiana-based utility Entergy in 2007. It was shut down in 2022.

Read Article: AP News

Company News: Critical Minerals

Albemarle Shares Plunge Nearly 18% as the Lithium Giant Offers New Stock

March 5th | ALB
  • Albemarle announced it would be selling as much as $2.01 billion in new stock to finance capital projects or lower its debt.
  • The company said it had begun offering $1.75 billion of depositary shares, each representing a 1/20th interest in a share of its Series A Mandatory Convertible Preferred Stock.
  • In addition, Albemarle expects to offer underwriters a 30-day option to buy up to another $262.5 million worth of the depositary shares.

Article: Investopedia

Lithium Argentina Announces Ganfeng Lithium Agrees to Acquire Interest in Pastos Grandes for $70M

March 5th | LAAC, GNENF

The Transaction with Ganfeng Lithium demonstrates our long-term commitment to Salta and the sustainable development of Argentina’s lithium industry John Kanellitsas, former Executive Vice Chair of Lithium Americas Corp

  • Ganfeng Lithium, with support of Lithium Argentina, to undertake preparation of a regional development plan for the Pastos Grandes Basin and PPG, expected to be finalized by the end of 2024.
  • Ganfeng Lithium agrees to acquire $70M in newly issued shares of PGCo, which is expected to represent an approximate 15% interest of PGCo.
  • The Transaction is expected to close in Q2 2024.

Press Release: Lithium Argentina

Deep Yellow Announces A$220M Placement

March 11th | DYLLF,  DYL (ASX)

We are very pleased with the success of the placement raising $220M, buoyed by the overwhelming level of interest to participate, and would like to thank all existing and new investors for their support. -John Borshoff, Managing Director & CEO, Deep Yellow

  • Funds will be raised to:
    • Advance development of the flagship Tumas Project, located in Namibia, with the commencement of construction post-Final Investment Decision, expected to be made in late Q3 2024.
    • Progress development activities at the Mulga Rock Project, located in Western Australia
    • Continue targeted exploration activities on current projects where significant opportunity exists for resource expansion.

  • The Placement will be completed at an issue price of A$1.225 per share.
  • Tranche 1 to raise approximately A$140.5M (before costs) through the issue of 114,706,334 Shares.
  • Tranche 2 to raise approximately A$79.5M (before costs) through the issue of 64,885,502 Shares.

Press Release: Deep Yellow

Lithium Americas Receives Conditional Commitment for $2.26 Billion ATVM Loan from the U.S. DOE for Construction of Thacker Pass

March 15th | LAC

The ATVM Loan Conditional Commitment announced today by the DOE is a significant milestone for Thacker Pass, which will help meet the growing domestic need for lithium chemicals and strengthen our nation’s security. -Jonathan Evans, President and CEO, Lithium Americas

  • Based on the terms of the Conditional Commitment, the Loan for $2.26 billion will have interest rates fixed from the date of each monthly advance for the term of the loan at applicable U.S. Treasury rates.
  • The Loan is intended to help finance the construction of Thacker Pass, targeted to produce an initial 40,000 tonnes per year of battery grade lithium carbonate
  • Thacker Pass Phase 1 is expected to create approximately 1,800 direct jobs during its three-year construction period and approximately 360 jobs in operations for its 40-year mine life.
  • In January 2023, GM agreed to invest $650 million in Lithium Americas across two tranches for the development of Thacker Pass, representing the largest investment publicly disclosed to date by an automaker in a company to produce battery raw materials.
  • GM has exclusive offtake to 100% of the lithium production from Phase 1 for up to 15 years and has a right of first offer on Phase 2 production.

Press Release: Lithium Americas

Rio Tinto to spend $350m on Argentine lithium plant

March 20th | RIO

The hard work of our Rincon team is laying the groundwork for our first lithium production by year’s end. Rio Tinto CEO Jakob Stausholm

  • Rio Tinto has earmarked $350m for its Rincon lithium project in Argentina, Reuters reported.
  • In 2022, Rio Tinto acquired the Rincon project from Rincon Mining for $825m, and looks to establish a battery-grade lithium carbonate plant capable of producing 3,000 tonnes annually.

Article: Mining Technology

Lifezone Metals Announces Receipt of Licence from Government of Tanzania for the Kabanga Nickel Project

March 21st | LZM

The ongoing level of commitment and support that we have received from the Government of Tanzania in the advancement of our Kabanga Nickel Project is exemplary. With the receipt of our Kabanga Special Mining Licence, and now the Kahama Refinery Licence, we have a clear path to delivering a direct-to- metal solution and enabling the production of nickel, copper and cobalt in Tanzania and by Tanzanians. -Chris Showalter CEO Lifezone Metals

  • The Kabanga Nickel Project is located in the north-west Tanzania and is believed to be one of the world’s largest and highest-grade undeveloped nickel sulfide deposits.
  • Lifezone’s subsidiary, Tembo Nickel Corporation is the operating entity for Kabanga and Kahama, and is 16% owned by the Government of Tanzania.
  • A Definitive Feasibility Study for the Kabanga Nickel Project remains on track for completion by Q3 2024.

Press Release: Lifezone Metals


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