Jammu & Kashmir: India’s first significant lithium discovery raises hopes for electric vehicles
Lithium is a rare mineral that is essential for producing electric vehicles, and India recently reported its first large finding of lithium reserves.
On Thursday, the government announced that 5.9 million tonnes of the mineral had been found in Jammu and Kashmir.
India had up to now relied on importing lithium from Australia and Argentina.
Lithium is a crucial component of rechargeable batteries, which power many devices, including electric vehicles, laptops, and smartphones.
According to experts, India’s plans to expand the number of private electric cars by 30% by 2030 as part of measures to reduce carbon emissions to combat global warming may benefit from the revelation.
According to the Indian Ministry of Mines, the Geological Survey of India discovered the lithium reserves in the Salal-Haimana region of the Reasi district in Jammu and Kashmir.
The government has previously stated that it was searching for sources in India and overseas to increase its supply of rare metals needed to advance innovative technologies.
According to Vivek Bharadwaj, secretary of the Ministry of Mines, India has been “re-orienting its exploration tactics” to achieve this objective.
The demand for rare metals, particularly lithium, has grown globally as nations strive to implement cleaner solutions to halt climate change.
The World Bank estimates that in order to achieve the global climate goals by 2050, mining of essential minerals will need to expand by 500%.
However, according to experts, the extraction of lithium is not environmentally beneficial.
Australia, Chile, and Argentina have the highest concentrations of subterranean brine reservoirs and hard rocks from which lithium may be recovered.
Following mining, the material is roasted using fossil fuels, scarring the surrounding area. Additionally, the extraction process uses a lot of water and produces a lot of carbon dioxide that is released into the atmosphere.
Large amounts of water are required to remove it from subterranean reservoirs, many of which are found in Argentina where water is scarce. This has sparked protests from indigenous people who claim that this activity is depleting natural resources and causing severe water shortages.