• To meet lithium demand in the Paris-aligned scenario, by 2030 we would need 20 more mines the size of Greenbushes in WA, currently the world’s largest: WoodMac
  • Can solid state batteries complete on cost? Not this decade
  • Near term miner AVZ hits another all time high

Our High Voltage column wraps all the news driving ASX stocks with exposure to lithium, cobalt, graphite, nickel, rare earths, and vanadium.

 

These are latest forecasts for metals demand in two scenarios: WoodMac’s base case forecast, in blue, and a Paris-aligned scenario on track to limit global warming to less than 2 degrees, in green:

The difference is enormous, WoodMac’s Ed Crooks says.

“To meet that demand for lithium, for example, in the Paris-aligned scenario, by 2030 we would need 20 more mines the size of Greenbushes in Western Australia, currently the world’s largest,” he says.

The monster Greenbushes mine next to its namesake town in South West WA. It’s like the Kalgoorlie Super Pit of lithium. Pic: Google Earth

 

Twenty additional world class mines in less than a decade. The process from exploration, through to resource definition and mining studies, financing and construction takes five years at the very least.

WoodMac is sceptical it can be achieved.

They aren’t the only ones. Last week, Benchmark Mineral Intelligence noted that a Glasgow climate conference declaration to phase out sales of petrol and diesel vehicles by 2040 would mean a +3000% increase in annual electric vehicle battery demand.

That’s 7 million tonnes of lithium (LCE) annually, which is 17 times more than lithium chemical production in 2021, and ~5 million tonnes of nickel sulphate, 19 times more than nickel sulphate production in 2021.

 

Can solid state batteries complete on cost? Not this decade

‘Solid state’ technology promises a battery that is higher capacity, higher density, higher performance, non-flammable, and quicker to charge – almost comparable to filling a car with fuel. It also doesn’t require cobalt.

However, most electric vehicles (EV) are unlikely to use more powerful solid-state and lithium metal batteries this decade as the tech will struggle to compete on costs, according to Benchmark.

“Lithium metal battery production capacity is set to reach 260 GWh by 2030, based on the current pipeline, as startups commercialise next generation technologies,” it says.

“But that won’t be enough to push costs below conventional lithium-ion batteries used in EVs.

“Unless solid-state can achieve cost parity, the promised benefits may not be sufficient for a technology shift in the mass-market electric vehicle segment.”

 

Battery Metals Winners and Losers

Here’s how a basket of ASX stocks with exposure to lithium, cobalt, graphite, nickel, rare earths and vanadium are performing>>>

CODE COMPANY 1 WEEK RETURN % 1 MONTH RETURN % 6 MONTH RETURN % 1 YEAR RETURN % PRICE MARKET CAP
PSC Prospect Resources 28 53 331 452 0.69 $ 289,253,386.13
AVZ AVZ Minerals 25 114 363 708 0.695 $ 2,140,084,832.20
MLS Metals Australia 25 25 25 25 0.0025 $ 13,096,393.40
NIC Nickel Mines 21 26 39 34 1.33 $ 3,231,812,330.54
CNJ Conico 16 -3 28 -8 0.037 $ 38,008,165.21
GAL Galileo Mining 15 -6 -20 7 0.235 $ 41,260,255.23
DEV Devex Resources 13 97 125 121 0.63 $ 213,625,265.36
STK Strickland Metals 12 -16 208 -28 0.074 $ 92,615,269.28
GSR Greenstone Resources 12 12 38 -19 0.029 $ 21,710,124.60
ARL Ardea Resources 11 13 20 28 0.55 $ 69,017,109.50
BOA Boadicea Resources 11 5 -33 -8 0.21 $ 17,093,976.90
SBR Sabre Resources 10 10 10 -50 0.0055 $ 9,291,225.07
IXR Ionic Rare Earths 9 23 85 243 0.048 $ 162,835,176.67
POS Poseidon Nick 8 -2 58 37 0.1025 $ 337,035,547.86
LYC Lynas Rare Earths 8 26 65 155 8.63 $ 7,724,642,902.24
VRC Volt Resources 8 -13 -30 180 0.028 $ 71,489,983.19
REE Rarex 8 10 24 -14 0.1075 $ 51,933,218.46
LEL Lithium Energy 7 57 123 1.05 $ 43,875,000.00
GL1 Globallith 7 62 178 0.68 $ 65,248,287.60
MIN Mineral Resources. 7 12 2 47 44.02 $ 7,937,374,368.33
LTR Liontown Resources 7 4 355 691 1.755 $ 3,278,528,425.13
AQD Ausquest 7 -6 -24 -11 0.016 $ 13,171,037.30
AR3 Austrare 6 14 0.92 $ 41,648,494.11
MRD Mount Ridley Mines 6 21 42 240 0.0085 $ 45,132,273.50
NVA Nova Minerals 5 -2 9 -32 0.1525 $ 297,336,196.91
GME GME Resources 5 -12 12 55 0.065 $ 38,015,408.77
NTU Northern Min 5 39 94 106 0.068 $ 339,850,557.62
BEM Blackearth Minerals 4 4 4 191 0.125 $ 26,630,920.21
CLA Celsius Resource 4 -3 -35 -26 0.028 $ 30,369,614.35
OZL OZ Minerals 3 6 3 78 26.355 $ 8,648,336,900.16
PLS Pilbara Min 3 21 134 342 2.53 $ 7,377,970,864.96
CXO Core Lithium 3 -7 143 1089 0.5825 $ 950,646,724.47
RBX Resource B 3 -5 444 444 0.185 $ 7,190,565.30
IGO IGO 3 8 42 116 10.31 $ 7,837,721,864.55
VMC Venus Metals Cor 3 15 15 -19 0.195 $ 29,460,343.19
MLX Metals X 3 5 63 364 0.39 $ 358,370,096.47
CWX Carawine Resources 2 -2 -18 -28 0.21 $ 26,541,863.99
EMH European Metals Hldg 2 11 16 83 1.46 $ 182,128,751.00
HAS Hastings Tech Met 2 -6 55 96 0.255 $ 443,306,261.64
ORE Orocobre 2 6 59 179 9.74 $ 6,081,994,090.44
MOH Moho Resources 2 -5 -27 -45 0.06 $ 7,546,524.12
BHP BHP Group 2 1 -20 5 38.07 $ 107,920,195,992.52
SRL Sunrise 1 -4 -7 -29 1.895 $ 170,659,680.71
PAN Panoramic Resources 0 0 52 81 0.235 $ 471,710,220.92
FFX Firefinch 1 7 51 379 0.695 $ 661,517,327.96
LPI Lithium Pwr Int 1 13 143 95 0.4975 $ 169,153,376.28
CTM Centaurus Metals 0 -1 49 101 1.105 $ 367,790,085.64
AJM Altura Mining 0 0 0 0 0.063161 $ 214,798,472.24
LML Lincoln Minerals 0 0 0 0 0.008 $ 4,599,869.49
RMX Red Mount Min 0 33 33 -14 0.012 $ 17,573,499.62
ALY Alchemy Resource 0 -8 -28 -35 0.012 $ 11,428,138.68
ATM Aneka Tambang 0 -6 3 3 1.03 $ 1,342,758.47
BRB Breaker Res NL 0 25 125 113 0.405 $ 135,223,985.54
SRI Sipa Resources 0 -2 -2 -25 0.054 $ 10,821,399.39
NMT Neometals 0 31 146 420 1.135 $ 625,149,091.44
GBR Greatbould Resources 0 -26 45 149 0.145 $ 50,013,013.26
VIA Viagold Rare Earth 0 0 2339 10426 2 $ 166,624,808.00
PAM Pan Asia Metals -1 -12 308 229 0.51 $ 36,829,322.00
PLL Piedmont Lithium Inc -1 7 9 127 0.85 $ 455,349,345.00
SGQ St George Min -2 -14 -25 -52 0.062 $ 35,940,647.16
G88 Golden Mile Res -2 -6 -18 -9 0.049 $ 8,208,879.74
AUZ Australian Mines -2 -10 25 35 0.0225 $ 94,678,300.51
S2R S2 Resources -2 147 33 -17 0.22 $ 71,274,971.00
AXE Archer Materials -2 -4 115 180 1.485 $ 374,912,818.61
NWC New World Resources -3 -4 -23 40 0.077 $ 122,194,664.59
WKT Walkabout Resources -3 -3 3 52 0.19 $ 81,417,340.23
RXL Rox Resources -3 -1 -23 -51 0.38 $ 59,890,893.32
CHN Chalice Mining -3 41 25 163 9.69 $ 3,510,500,363.80
ARR American Rare Earths -3 -10 127 59 0.175 $ 61,156,568.20
LPD Lepidico -3 83 265 428 0.0475 $ 292,300,460.17
MCR Mincor Resources NL -3 -7 30 26 1.255 $ 605,434,200.00
VUL Vulcan Energy -3 -24 54 376 10.24 $ 1,349,797,281.70
PVW PVW Res -3 0 214 193 0.44 $ 31,518,703.13
AOU Auroch Minerals -3 -19 -29 -15 0.145 $ 52,818,086.40
AAJ Aruma Resources -4 -7 20 -25 0.079 $ 9,950,958.74
LIT Lithium Australia NL -4 4 13 150 0.13 $ 127,888,665.38
INR Ioneer -4 0 104 177 0.6925 $ 1,445,636,621.30
MRC Mineral Commodities -4 -17 -42 -65 0.12 $ 64,198,876.08
RNU Renascor Res -4 -8 64 991 0.12 $ 226,635,139.20
PGM Platina Resources -4 -9 12 52 0.067 $ 28,669,234.57
ESR Estrella Res -4 -7 -33 -71 0.0335 $ 38,842,443.42
MMC Mitremining -5 -5 0.21 $ 5,958,722.00
TON Triton Min -5 25 -2 -5 0.04 $ 45,378,722.68
FGR First Graphene -5 -9 -20 11 0.2 $ 115,525,407.06
GLN Galan Lithium -5 35 125 520 1.52 $ 448,652,876.95
MAN Mandrake Res -5 -15 -67 -33 0.056 $ 27,867,583.06
VR8 Vanadium Resources -5 -10 47 177 0.072 $ 36,902,765.17
LEG Legend Mining -5 -31 -53 -48 0.052 $ 140,511,921.77
CHR Charger Metals -5 5 0.43 $ 13,773,345.05
AML Aeon Metals . -6 -16 -39 -68 0.046 $ 40,514,847.93
BUX Buxton Resources -6 30 -5 29 0.09 $ 13,605,543.20
PEK Peak Resources -6 -15 -28 45 0.0665 $ 137,162,854.81
IPT Impact Minerals -7 0 -13 -36 0.014 $ 26,309,333.95
ILU Iluka Resources -7 -10 13 63 8.515 $ 3,576,059,789.90
COB Cobalt Blue -7 -5 22 290 0.39 $ 119,398,738.80
SYR Syrah Resources -7 7 15 75 1.2 $ 600,975,341.22
EGR Ecograf -7 -1 11 282 0.63 $ 303,975,084.83
SYA Sayona Mining -8 -5 393 2147 0.1525 $ 1,056,720,846.60
JRV Jervois Global -8 -10 13 110 0.535 $ 849,115,070.16
PUR Pursuit Minerals -8 3 -53 169 0.035 $ 34,669,514.89
CZN Corazon -8 -13 -5 -42 0.035 $ 10,547,499.98
NKL Nickelx -8 -18 -18 0.115 $ 6,918,750.00
AZL Arizona Lithium -8 38 267 900 0.11 $ 213,780,195.97
JRL Jindalee Resources -8 -1 -9 194 2.355 $ 135,259,915.00
SLZ Sultan Resources -9 -11 -43 -32 0.16 $ 10,951,666.27
MNS Magnis Energy Tech -9 60 112 242 0.615 $ 475,585,652.84
VML Vital Metals -9 2 15 107 0.06 $ 249,928,985.04
ASN Anson Resources -9 63 154 353 0.145 $ 148,102,895.60
EUR European Lithium -10 33 150 233 0.14 $ 155,943,245.99
ARN Aldoro Resources -10 13 43 191 0.465 $ 40,011,115.05
LOT Lotus Resources -10 -3 64 233 0.32 $ 305,711,940.24
ESS Essential Metals -10 19 142 150 0.22 $ 51,088,294.41
PNN PepinNini Minerals -10 33 139 307 0.61 $ 28,095,333.00
TMT Technology Metals -11 -13 -1 -21 0.335 $ 64,354,599.50
BKT Black Rock Mining -11 -5 28 141 0.205 $ 166,781,540.84
HYM Hyperion Metals -11 -12 -12 252 0.88 $ 131,816,624.00
BMM Balkanminingandmin -12 -31 0.49 $ 15,392,500.00
BSX Blackstone -12 -12 51 57 0.565 $ 213,957,517.20
LKE Lake Resources -12 -3 219 1409 0.86 $ 1,105,887,900.39
AVL Aust Vanadium -12 6 28 113 0.0255 $ 85,316,636.76
QEM QEM -12 19 13 169 0.215 $ 23,251,783.27
AGY Argosy Minerals -13 12 218 383 0.28 $ 353,194,666.72
PRL Province Resources -13 6 -3 1337 0.165 $ 186,393,868.82
ADD Adavale Resource -13 -22 -53 -2 0.046 $ 16,146,881.31
TKL Traka Resources -13 -13 -19 -38 0.013 $ 8,087,402.62
INF Infinity Lithium -13 11 191 56 0.195 $ 86,707,414.29
QXR Qx Resources -14 -17 67 39 0.025 $ 16,959,058.03
RLC Reedy Lagoon Corp. -14 59 153 291 0.043 $ 23,761,151.30
RFR Rafaella Resources -14 -6 -27 -14 0.073 $ 13,733,454.10
ADV Ardiden -14 9 20 -48 0.012 $ 25,840,024.27
GED Golden Deeps -14 0 9 -25 0.012 $ 10,086,068.72
AZS Azure Minerals -14 -1 33 -56 0.36 $ 109,956,180.96
A8G Australasian Gold -15 -20 226 0.555 $ 22,718,886.52
TNG TNG -15 -27 -7 -18 0.077 $ 105,518,989.76
FRS Forrestaniaresources -16 -3 0.36 $ 9,256,500.00
QPM Queensland Pacific -17 -17 82 456 0.2 $ 257,566,494.89
TLG Talga Group -17 14 14 -9 1.73 $ 537,803,476.04
ARU Arafura Resource -17 0 30 124 0.215 $ 341,091,813.04
GW1 Greenwing Resources -18 53 48 123 0.445 $ 50,764,288.58
HNR Hannans -18 18 478 478 0.04 $ 117,282,216.42
HXG Hexagon Energy -25 2 -2 39 0.086 $ 40,141,244.43
CAE Cannindah Resources -35 -17 205 596 0.195 $ 123,074,362.39

 

Weekly Standout Stocks

AVZ MINERALS (ASX:AVZ)

$2.24bn market cap AVZ just hit another all-time high, despite its flagship Manono lithium-tin project being in one of the most volatile mining jurisdictions in the world, the Democratic Republic of Congo.

In the last week alone gunmen allegedly kidnapped five Chinese gold miners workers in the country’s conflict-plagued east; another attack saw 12 killed in the northeastern Ituri province.

AVZ is much further south in the Tanganyika province, which “often witnesses violent clashes between its different communities, driven by social tensions and land disputes”, according to Reuters.

On top of that, there are the proposed routes to get its product from the almost landlocked country all the way to ports in Tanzania and Angola, which involves ferry, road and rail transportation:

For AVZ and its Chinese backers the world class, +30-year Manono project is a high risk, very high reward proposition.

If everything goes according to plan – which it is, so far — Manono could be one of the next globally significant lithium mining operations.

Over the past financial year, the company has locked in long-term, binding sales agreements with three major Chinese lithium converters for 80% of its spodumene production, as well as a three-year binding offtake agreement with a major participant in the tin market.

In September it secured a cornerstone investor, Suzhou CATH Energy Technologies, to underpin project development. CATH will pay US$240 million cash for a 24% equity interest in the project, with further amounts to be paid as its pro rata portion of funding to develop the mines.

From a licensing and permitting perspective, AVZ says it is confident “that our excellent relationship with the DRC Government will soon deliver our all-important Mining Licence and the other agreements”.

“The granting of our Mining Licence will facilitate the release of the updated Manono Bankable Feasibility Study (BFS) and shortly thereafter, we are expecting to announce the appointment of a Mandated Lead Arranger (MLA) to lead a syndicated debt funding facility for the Project,” AVZ chairman John Clarke says.

“Importantly, the debt component of funding will be less than 50% on the basis of the CATH transaction.

“Once the deal with CATH is finalised, the Board will be able to make a Final Investment Decision (FID) which will kick-start project construction.”