June 13, 2017

Electric Vehicles Are Creating A Huge Demand For Copper


A recent report predicts a “nine-fold increase in copper demand” by 2027 due to electric vehicles.

Reuters reports that electric vehicles use substantially more copper than traditionally powered vehicles:

Electric vehicles use a substantial amount of copper in their batteries and in the windings and copper rotors used in electric motors. A single car can have up to six kilometers of copper wiring, according to the ICA.

The Financial Times reported that electric vehicles have also sparked lithium supply fears:

Fast forward 12 months and concern is growing among analysts, and some other carmakers, that the supply of what Mr Musk dismissed as mere “salt” will not be able to keep pace with demand as the expansion of electric vehicles begins to erode the world’s century-long reliance on oil.

The materials needed for electric vehicles, from rare earth to copper, have many questioning the environmental benefit of electric vehicles when compared to traditionally powered vehicles.