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1:11 am | June 13, 2024
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lithium mining threatens tibet's environment
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Lithium mining threatens Tibet’s environment

Lithium mining threatens Tibet’s environment

Most electric vehicle batteries on the road are made from lithium-ion. From Tesla to Ola, most major battery manufacturers use these cells to power their vehicles. Due to these reasons, the demand for lithium is now very high.

And China is now indiscriminate as the top battery producer. The country’s largest lithium mine is in Tibet. Lithium extraction is going on day and night there. Environmentalists have expressed the fear of widespread environmental disaster.

Recently, this news came out in a report in the Japan Times.

According to the report, 85% of China’s total lithium reserves are in Tibet. Chinese companies are increasingly taking advantage of Tibet by destroying the natural environment of Tibet. As the world’s largest battery market, China needs an uninterrupted supply of lithium, the report added, citing a recent study.

Unfortunately, this demand is exploiting the reserves of the Tibetan Plateau. Chinese miners are polluting the local environment through ‘quick, cheap, and dirty’ methods of extracting and processing material.

About 3.6 million tonnes of China’s lithium reserves exist in hard rock mines in Tibet, Sichuan, and the adjacent Qinghai provinces. Environmentally unsafe mining techniques are destroying the ecology of the region.

This mining process is particularly threatening to climate change in biodiverse areas. The study also noted a case where thousands of fish died and grasslands were destroyed as a result of mining operations.

International electric vehicle manufacturers are also indirectly compounding the crisis, the report said. Big EV carmakers like Tesla and BYD want an uninterrupted supply of lithium. Their continued pressure is indirectly responsible for this mining and environmental disaster.

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