In which I get pissy with people

Brine is salty water, those South American brines are much saltier than seawater. They cannot be and are not used for other things – largely because they kill any plants or animals they are applied to. One of the salts in that salty water is a lithium salt (salt can be the stuff we put on our food, but also a large number of chemical compounds). The way that 500,000 gallons of water is used to process the lithium is that we take the lithium out of the salt water.

That is, we don’t use 500,000 gallons of water to get a tonne of lithium, we clean 500,000 gallons of water to get a tonne of lithium.

Basing public policy on this sort of drivel just isn’t going to make us a richer and happier nation. Who knows, perhaps we could start basing what we do on some knowledge of reality? Or is that too much to ask?

This Fotherington Thomas ‘allo sky shit seriously angers me.

4 thoughts on “In which I get pissy with people”

  1. If the effluent is dumped properly in a marine environment, yes.
    But I doubt the effluent of a plant can remotely be called “potable” or even “sweet”. So dumping it in a river can have some wide-ranging knock-on effects.

    No doubt the Green UK would pipe the effluent to the sea, since it’s relatively close. But elsewhere peeps definitely don’t bother, and it’s those effects that trigger the B-Ark green prodnoses.

    They aren’t exactly wrong, but they’ve got it ass-backwards. As expected, but still.

  2. SQM Chile is the biggest producer of Li. They extract brine from wells & use solar evaporation, so the water ends up in the air. A range of chemicals are precipitated in the ponds as well as lithium compounds. There is no river pollution- it’s in a desert. They may be lowering the water table by brine extraction, but on the other hand the water ends up in the atmosphere & ends up as rain somewhere…

  3. “the water ends up in the atmosphere & ends up as rain somewhere…”

    Probably falling as rain on the mountains and running back into the water table. Water Cycle innit.

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