The Wall Street JournalThe Wall Street Journal

EV makers confront the ‘nickel pickle’

By Jon Emont

04 Jun 2023 · 6 min read

informed Summary

  1. Nickel mining, essential for making batteries for EVs, carries considerable environmental harm due to deforestation and carbon-intensive refining processes.

In the electric-vehicle business, the quandary is known as the nickel pickle.

To make batteries for EVs, companies need to mine and refine large amounts of nickel. The process of getting the mineral out of the ground and turning it into battery-ready substances, though, is particularly environmentally unfriendly. Reaching the nickel means cutting down swaths of rainforest. Refining it is a carbon-intensive process that involves extreme heat and high pressure, producing waste slurry that’s hard to dispose of.

Sign in to informed

  • Curated articles from premium publishers, ad-free
  • Concise Daily Briefs with quick-read summaries
  • Read, listen, save for later, or enjoy offline
  • Enjoy personalized content

By continuing, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.