Tom Randall has a Twitter thread on things that affect battery price for LiIon battery packs of electric cars. »If lithium prices quadruple, the cost of finished battery packs would only go up 1.6%, and the sticker price of an electric car will see almost no impact. Some people may get rich off metals in the meantime, but it’s not going to slow down the transition to electric cars.«
His research also covers Cobalt, Nickel and Manganese. His estimates:»When EVs achieve a quarter of global sales, lithium demand will require less than 1% of known global reserves (assuming we’re even still using lithium-heavy battery chemistries by then).« We will need to expand production, and a few people will get rich, but there is not really a lithium shortage.
Cobalt is a bit more complicated, and especially because of the human rights issues with it in Congo. Randall reminds us that we do not need so much Cobalt, if we choose so.