Lithium is the lightest weight metal with the greatest electrochemical properties which leads to an efficient energy to weight performance, such as mobility devices and vehicle batteries.
Lithium Industry Trends
The need for lithium continues to accelerate, with demand from companies that produce batteries to power electric vehicles, laptops and other high-tech devices,
- Price expected to increase 300% by 2025
- Overall lithium demand forecast to rise from 200,000 tons of lithium carbonate to 600,000 tons lithium carbonate by 2025.
- Automotive industry has the biggest demand for lithium batteries that may become 70% of overall demand for lithium.
- China has committed to build 5 million electric cars by 2020.
- At this time, there is no replacement for lithium which remains a necessary battery component .
- Bloomberg said, “even if the price of lithium soars 300 percent, battery costs would rise by only 2%.”
- Tesla (TSLA),CEO, Elon Musk calls lithium pricing “the salt on the salad.”
- Forbes Magazine recently stated “For 100% electric car penetration, lithium must see a 2,898% increase in production.”
Why Lithium is Green
Lithium is a key component in the green energy storage industry with no replacement. Production of lithium from underground brines have a nominal carbon footprint.
Of course, the ultimate green revolution, which has already started, is the replacement of vehicles burning fossil fuels that emit carbon dioxide to electric vehicles that simply don’t. there are currently 1.7 million electric vehicles which is expected to increase to approx. 30 million electric vehicles or more than a 25% market share by 2030; simply put there is a race to replace fossil fuels.
There are several positive factors confirming that, if lithium brines are discovered and developed, potential production of lithium at the Salar del Diablo could be sustainably green:
i) The use of either separation or replacement technologies may eliminate the cost and environmental disruption of evaporation ponds;
ii) Low magnesium levels that average 1.3% means the energy cost to separate lithium may be considerably less than other operations with higher magnesium content;
iii) The aquifers that may contain lithium may be close to surface so the cost of pumping the brines to surface will also be correspondingly less;
iv) There is a regional power line crossing the Property, which provides access to electricity; and
v) from an environmental perspective there will be no salt piles, waste water, rock piles, open pits or tailings.