Our weekly digest of news in the Lithium Mining industry.
Who knows what the top end of Lithium pricing is, but we do know it keeps going up. Take a look at the Platts chart from yesterday. For all those chanting that the market will be controlled by Lithium Hydroxide, well currently that is narrowing. This is the stage for our companies. This chart matters. Your high OPEX groups are able to produce and have a profit.
Lithium Americas (LAC)
Lithium Americas (LAC) gets a lot of love, and it's simple to understand; they are going to have a massive mine in Nevada, meanwhile they have South American operations that are going to generate LiCO3.
LTHM is banking on Lithium Hydroxide. While any supplier right now is a good supplier, this is showing in the fact they are performing with the market. Their issue seems to be with capacity. From those I have talked to, there is a thought they are not as responsive as people are expecting them to be. Things can be going on that we don't know about.
Piedmont Lithium (PLL)
If you have been following the soap opera in North Carolina you would probably not understand the momentum of PLL lately. This momentum is due to their work in Canada and getting that going. Piedmont wants to be a major player (they just aren't right now, but they are lining things up). Part of this is getting things in place for predictable supply.
Is it weird to have a 'man-crush' on a Lithium company. Okay, probably but, do I like the way this is all shaking out for Standard Lithium! I woke up this morning to an announcement that not only were they producing Lithium from brine that was being pumped back into the aquifer, they were also starting CO2 capture.
So... (1) SLI is about to start shipping Lithium (2)Environmentally friendly (see SQM). (3) Domestic and (4) Scalable. (I'm crushing there a bit).
Look for that announcement that they are 'in production' in the next few weeks. This will be huge.
SQM is having difficulties with their indigenous neighbors. This is their Atacama Salt Flats site. There is talk of suspending their mining permits. I don't know enough to tell you if this is a serious theat. Either way, this is why I prefer domestic production. Remember the subject of whether environmentally mined lithium? They are accused of removing too much brine and letting it get evaporated.
Reuters reported SANTIAGO, Sept 13 (Reuters) - Indigenous communities living around Chile's Atacama salt flat have asked authorities to suspend lithium miner SQM's operating permits or sharply reduce its operations until it submits an environmental compliance plan acceptable to regulators, according to a filing viewed by Reuters.
More reason to love DLE (Direct Lithium Extraction).
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