Nickel Mine Developer Has Major Tesla Commitment


TAMARACK, Minnesota (AP) – The company that plans to develop a nickel mine in northeast Minnesota has entered into a major supply agreement with Tesla, the electric vehicle maker.

Tesla has committed to purchase 75,000 tonnes of nickel concentrate over six years from Talon Metals’ planned mine in Tamarack, approximately 80 kilometers west of Duluth. Talon hopes to open the mine by January 2026, but has not yet started the licensing process.

Nickel is a key ingredient in electric vehicle batteries.

“This agreement marks the start of an innovative partnership between Tesla and Talon for the responsible production of battery materials directly from the mine to the battery cathode,” Talon CEO Henri van Rooyen said in a statement.

Tesla would claim more than half of the mine’s nickel concentrate output, which would be further refined before it could be used to make batteries, the Star Tribune reported.

“The Talon team has taken an innovative approach to the discovery, development and production of battery materials, including to permanently store carbon in mining operations,” said Drew Baglino, vice president Tesla senior in charge of the powertrain and energy engineering, in a statement.

Talon is developing a system that would capture CO2 from the air and store it permanently in the mine waste rock.

“Responsible sourcing of battery materials has long been a priority for Tesla,” said Baglino, “and this project holds the promise of accelerating the production of sustainable energy products in North America.”

Tesla’s deal with Talon is the first for nickel in the United States.

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