electric car

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Toyota  says it has developed a magnet which replaces some of the neodymium, a rare earth metal used in the world’s most powerful permanent batteries, with cheaper lanthanum and cerium.  Photograph: Getty Images

Toyota has found a way to reduce the amount of a rare earth metal used in magnets for electric car motors by around 20 per cent. This could cut the co(...)

A child and a woman break rocks extracted from a cobalt mine at a copper quarry and cobalt pit in Lubumbashi. Instead of benefiting from its vast mineral wealth, Congolese are among the world’s poorest people, with a per-capita income of $800.  Photograph: Getty Images

Behind every clean electric car there is cobalt. And behind cobalt is the Democratic Republic of Congo. Cobalt is a critical element in lithium-ion b(...)