RENO, Nev. (AP) — A federal appeals court has cleared the way for the highly-contested construction in Nevada of the largest lithium mine in the U.S. The court is allowing construction while it considers whether the government illegally approved the mine in a rush to produce raw materials for electric vehicle batteries. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday denied the request from environmentalists and tribes to stop a subsidiary of Lithium Americas from breaking ground near the Oregon line. The company and the Biden administration said further delay was undermining efforts to combat climate change as the 2-year-old legal battle lingers. A company spokesman confirmed late Wednesday construction was under way.