Lithium mining is having a devastating impact on local and indigenous communities as well as ecosystems around the globe, and reducing dependence on automobiles must be a key part of our strategy to curb the damage, a new report says.
According to a new analysis from the Natural Resources Defense Council, the rapid expansion of the electric vehicle battery market is driving a boom in demand for lithium carbonate, a synthesized compound whose key component — lithium itself — is derived from just a tiny handful of natural deposits located throughout the world.
By 2030, experts expect global lithium carbonate demand to increase sixfold — and when it does, and a whopping 79 percent of that massive market will be consumed by automakers alone.
That’s particularly alarming for the Puna de Atacama region, which has become known in the battery industry as the global “Lithium Triangle” — much to the chagrin of local and indigenous communities.
For the rest of this article: https://usa.streetsblog.org/2022/05/03/why-lithium-mining-for-ev-batteries-should-be-our-absolute-last-resort/