Piedmont Lithium has announced it will be unable to deliver its first planned shipment of lithium to Tesla as the company’s mine in North Carolina has hit some stumbling blocks.
The first shipment was planned for sometime between July 2022 and July 2023. The company said it does not know when the first delivery will take place, but that Tesla agreed to the delay.
The delay is a result of Piedmont not yet applying for a state mining permit, or a necessary zoning variance that would allow it do develop one of the world’s largest lithium mines.
Once the application is complete, an approval might not come easy as several officials have voiced concerns about the project and said they may block or delay it until they get all the necessary information.
“Piedmont has sort of put the proverbial cart before the horse,” said Tom Keigher, chair of the board of commissioners. “Why in the world would they make this deal with Tesla before they even have approval for the mine?” (via Reuters)
Tesla signed a five-year lithium supply deal with Piedmont last September. Under the terms of the deal, Piedmont is to supply Tesla with approximately 1/3 of its planned 160,000 tonne per annum spudomene concentrate from the North Carolina mine.