"In a recent report from the Geological Survey of Finland, researchers considered the minerals implications for achieving a so-called full transition; that is, using solar and wind to electrify all ground transport as well as to produce hydrogen for both aviation and chemical processes. They found the resulting demand for nearly every necessary mineral, including common ones such as copper, nickel, graphite, and lithium, would exceed not just existing and planned global production capabilities, but also known global reserves of those minerals.
"A recent analysis by the Wood Mackenzie consultancy found that if EVs are to account for two-thirds of all new car purchases by 2030, dozens of new mines must be opened just to meet automotive demands—each mine the size of the world’s biggest in each category today. But 2030 is only eight years away and, as the IEA has reported, opening a new mine takes 16 years on average.
"Despite these and similar analyses, many countries, and many US states, are now proposing to accelerate deployment of solar, wind, and battery technologies without clear plans for overcoming the material shortfalls. One study sponsored by the Dutch government offered a blunt statement of reality: 'Exponential growth in [global] renewable energy production capacity is not possible with present-day technologies and annual metal production.'"