Renewable Energy to Power First Lithium Mines of North America

Highlights :

  • The lithium mining company informed that 98 per cent of the power will come from hydroelectric sources.
  • Experts also say that Nevada in the USA may have large reserves of lithium that can satisfy 25 per cent of the world needs.
Renewable Energy to Power First Lithium Mines of North America

Canadian mining major Snow Lake Lithium which has plans to open the first lithium mine in North America in the near future says the mining will be done using renewable energy completely.

As per Snow Lake Lithium, the lithium resource mining will start in the province of Manitoba in Canada in 2024 or 2025. The mining business of the company will employ 98 percent of its power from a hydroelectric source. The remaining two per cent of the energy remains unknown and the company has not disclosed it as of now.

The Manitoba government informs that more than 98 percent of its power is derived from hydroelectric and wind energy sources in the province. The key electricity source in the region is Manitoba Hydro. The renewable power company operates 16 hydroelectric power stations and it is the leading electricity and natural gas utility company in Manitoba.

Manitoba – which will provide renewable power to the new lithium mining business in the province – also buys wind power from wind farms which are mostly run by the independent players in the Canadian province.

Lithium is a scarce resource worldwide.  Recently some experts have opined that Nevada State in the North West of the United States may have enormous lithium reserves which could satisfy 25 percent of global demand.

As EV’s ramp up, the lithoum for the batteries powering them also has to be mined responsibly, to keep the carbon footprint of manufacturing these EV’s down.

Experts believe that new mining objectives in North America are to give the car makers of North America an edge against China as far as sustainability of the entire process in the electric vehicles segment is concerned.

It is hoped  that when the Manitoba mine becomes fully operational, it will produce about 160,000 metric tons of usable lithium over a period of 10 years. This also implies that the domestic carmakers of the region will have access to the raw material on which the entire EV sector depends and the breaks in global supply chain – as witnessed during the Covid-19 led pandemic – will not hamper the production systems.

At present, 77 percent of the world’s raw materials refining market is controlled by China which is also the leading exporter of lithium-ion batteries. The prices have shot up in the present times and there is an acute shortage of lithium carbonate hampering plans of major automakers across the globe, including North America.

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