Quebec firm that produces minerals for electric cars gets $222M in federal funds

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Ottawa will make investments $222 million to assist a Quebec firm enhance manufacturing of vital minerals for items corresponding to electric cars and batteries whereas concurrently chopping emissions, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau mentioned Tuesday.


It’s a part of a $737-million plan from Rio Tinto over eight years to decarbonize its Rio Tinto Fer et Titane operations in Sorel-Tracy, Que., and increase its manufacturing of vital minerals corresponding to lithium, scandium and titanium.


Trudeau made the announcement after visiting the power, about 90 kilometres northeast of Montreal.


“Today’s announcement with Rio Tinto will create jobs and place Canada as a pacesetter in the vital minerals that go into issues like electric autos for our net-zero future,” Trudeau informed a information convention.


The cash, he mentioned, will come by way of the Strategic Innovation Fund and assist the plant in central Quebec minimize its emissions in half by 2030 by electrifying furnaces and chopping out coal.


Jakob Stausholm, Rio Tinto’s CEO, mentioned the funding would assist strengthen North American vital mineral manufacturing at a time when world tensions spotlight the necessity for safe provides.


He gave the instance of scandium, a mineral that he mentioned was beforehand produced nearly solely in Russia and China, however is now being produced in Quebec.


He mentioned vital minerals are additionally essential to a number of sectors that play key roles in addressing local weather change — together with electric autos, 3D printing and aerospace.


“Critical minerals are merely a requirement in order to alter the world’s vitality system,” he mentioned.


The federal authorities mentioned in a information launch that its funding will create as much as 150 jobs on the firm.


It provides that the funding will help home and international clear know-how provide chains and assist make Canada the “world provider of selection” for the vital minerals and supplies wanted for the inexperienced, digital world financial system.


Earlier, Trudeau donned a security hat and glasses as he toured an indication plant that will take a look at new smelting know-how aimed toward decreasing emissions. The challenge, known as BlueSmelting, works by breaking down minerals on the molecular degree earlier than they’re melted, decreasing the quantity of coal required, in accordance with Caroline Bureau, the corporate’s government director of engineering and contractor administration.


The firm mentioned in a information launch that the challenge, whether it is ever totally applied and expanded, has the potential to cut back the greenhouse gasoline emissions at Rio Tinto’s Sorel-Tracy operation by as much as 70 per cent.


— This report by The Canadian Press was first revealed Oct. 11, 2022. 

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