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The UK economy is set to receive a major boost from Cornish Lithium, a British eco-technology company that’s focused on mineral exploration and development of lithium. Lithium is a vital element that is used in the production of electric vehicles. Jeremy Wrathall, the CEO of Cornish Lithium believes that once they can extract lithium from the rocks in Cornwall, the UK will be set to become a major exporter of electric cars.
He said:” We have found lithium in the UK. We have found it to be present dissolved in the brine.
“We have also found it in rocks. We know it’s there. It was first discovered and identified dissolved in water in 1864.
“There just hasn’t been an imperative to develop that until now that the electric vehicle revolution has taken off.”
Mr Wrathall believes that without UK-based lithium, the country would be entirely reliant on imports, and dependent on China, which controls massive portions of the electric batteries market.
He said: “Given that China controls roughly 80 percent of the battery chemicals market, we would be dependent on imports from China or elsewhere.
“Therefore it is very difficult for the automotive industry to flourish under that scenario.
“Lithium is going to make a huge difference to our economy.
“We are pioneering the development of extracting lithium from the rocks in Cornwall.”
Mr Wrathall expects that, in the future, the demand for lithium will be so high that the UK will end up using all the extracted lithium domestically.
He said: “The Faraday Institute, which is the government body that analyses how much materials we’ll need for the electric car industry, highlights that we’re gonna need 72,000 tonnes of lithium carbonate by 2035.
“At the moment what we can see is that we can’t produce that much, we’ll still have to import some lithium.”
According to Mr Wrathall, the Government is very concerned about its access to that material given its critical importance to the automotive industry.
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Last week, Britishvolt, a promising new startup, has received £2.5billion in investment to produce its electric vehicle batteries in Northumberland.
It also received hundreds of millions from the Government, in a major boost to the UK’s bid to develop a domestic supply chain.
Mr Wrathall believes that this is the boost that the UK need to manufacture electric vehicles.
He said: “Yes we absolutely can [become a top EV exporter].
“That’s why we’re seeing the UK government get behind BritishVolt, because we want to be able to export electric cars.”
Mr Wrathall believes that the Lithium they extract can be used to build electric batteries at Britishvolt, and at other gigafactories.
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