Cornwall looks set for a £50billion mining revolution after plans were revealed to make Poldark country Europe’s sole producer of lithium.
Lithium – known as ‘white petroleum’ – is used in the rapidly growing market for electric cars and rechargeable batteries in everything from mobile phones to cordless vacuums.
Most lithium is produced in South America, Australia and China but there are vast quantities locked inside its large granite stores up to 1,000 metres below the Cornish soil.
But with no European source the UK Government has earmarked lithium as a metal of strategic importance to the country and new mines could be opened or existing ones brought back into action.
I don’t say that this will work and I’m certainly not suggesting that you invest.
However, it is at least realistic .
There’s plenty of lithium around, any number of places you could get it from (there are at least two plans within 10 km of where I am now in Bohemia). But two good starts are with granite and with hot brines. And here in Cornwall they’re talking about extraction from hot brines running through granite – an entirely reasonable starting point.
Myself I would check on one other source before charging ahead though. The wastes from the China clay industry will have a decent amount of lithium in them and God Knows there’s enough of that lying about…..