Europe’s sovereign lithium


It has been said more than once that lithium is literally becoming the cornerstone of a new transport and energy era. And of course, some say that lithium reserves are limited, and there will not be enough for all electric car manufacturers. But lithium-on batteries are also the basis for energy storage systems. Yes, leading battery developers and manufacturers are now creating new batteries with significantly lower levels of lithium and other cells. But if cobalt, nickel or other elements can be «shuffled», then without lithium anywhere.

Many, unfortunately, missed our May material «

Coming back a little, let me remind you that today the largest lithium deposit in the world is considered to be the Great Lithium Triangle in South America. It is a high-altitude region of the Andes, in the # atacama desert region, rich in lithium reserves in the border area of Argentina, Bolivia and Chile. In fact, the «lithium ridge» extends far to the south, along virtually all of the Andes. It is believed that about 54% of the world’s lithium reserves are concentrated here.

In Europe, its own reserves of lithium were also found earlier. In particular in Austria, Serbia and Finland, and in Portugal. In Russia, lithium reserves have been explored in the Irkutsk and Murmansk regions. In total, lithium reserves in our country are estimated at about 900 thousand tons, distributed over 17 deposits.

But take a closer look at all the locations described above. What do they have in common. The common thing is that these are mountainous, foothill locations, as well as places in the past of calderas of supervolcanoes. And it is quite natural that new lithium developments are associated precisely with this geography, including in Europe.

Renault recently released a press release on August 9 stating that the company has entered into a strategic partnership with Vulcan Energy to generate between 6,000 and 17,000 metric tons of European lithium per year for battery production. At the same time, the process of extracting lithium itself will be absolutely environmentally friendly. Vulcan Energy’s lithium project is called

And lithium will be mined in Germany, from lithium brine obtained at a geothermal station in the Upper Rhine valley. Yes, this is absolutely the same technology that we talked about earlier in the above article. And the lithium mining region also coincides with the project of the Eramet company.

The extraction of lithium at the geothermal station is almost 100 percent pure production. No open pit mining, no huge evaporators. Everything happens in a closed loop. Well, and also, plus everything, «green» # electricity and # heat, which in fact are the main «product» of the geothermal station.

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vulcan energy plans to gradually expand its lithium production by opening new geothermal plants. Now, before our very eyes, a new production segment is being created, which many did not even know about before. This will give European EV makers their sovereign European lithium, and will not rely heavily on supplies from companies that have been considered industry monopolies for many years.