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Daily Shorts: France will explore Mongolia for lithium, US EV sales at record high, and more

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France struck a deal with Mongolia to explore the country for lithium deposits. The French geological service will spend €400,000 to explore a potentially lithium-rich basin in the landlocked country, according to the agreement signed in Paris by the presidents of both nations. France, which generates most of its electricity through nuclear reactors, is betting big on clean energy, with President Macron personally involved in pitches for giga factories.

US electric vehicle sales hit a record in the third quarter, crossing 300,000 for the first time, according to a report by Cox Automotive. Elon Musk's Tesla accounted for half the sales, but the behemoth's share has shrunk from 62 percent in the first quarter of the year. Musk has slashed prices and earlier this month doubled down on the price war to move inventory; the company's Model 3 vehicle now costs $7,000 less than the average US vehicle price.

New York has rejected requests by renewable energy project developers to charge customers a higher price for electricity because of rising costs. Wind farm developers Orsted and Equinor and energy company BP were among companies who sought to renegotiate contracts on four offshore wind farms and 86 onshore projects, claiming inflationary pressure had made projects unfeasible. New York wants renewables to account for at least 70 percent of the state's power by 2030 and aims to reach zero emissions by 2040.

The increasingly erratic and extreme global climate has boosted demand for weather derivatives, a financial product that lets companies bet on the weather. Data from the Chicago Mercantile Exchange shows that average open interest in weather futures and options for January to September this year was four times as much as last year, and 12 times more than 2019. Players such as energy companies, hedge funds and commodity traders use the derivatives to either protect themselves against global climate, or profit from its vagaries.

Daily Shorts: UK gets a £10 bn clean energy investor, Banga wants harmful subsidies slashed, and more

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