It’s not just the world's limited lithium resources that will hit the world’s move towards an electric future, but the dearth of refineries and lithium-ion producers -- 'Li' being a key component in batteries that power everything from phones to EVs.
Silvery white and the least dense, lithium is the lightest metal and lightest solid element. This metal, mostly found in compound states, is essential for lithium batteries as well as lithium-ion batteries. The metallic compound is the key part of modern batteries that power electronics from smartphones to laptops, to electric vehicles (EVs). It is for this reason that the price of lithium has reached record highs.
The price of 99.5 percent lithium carbonate has reached 227,500 yuan (over Rs 27 lakh) per tonne, an increase of over 450 percent over the past year. The prices are only expected to increase as the lithium sector is expected to face shortages starting 2022, and continue well into the end of the decade.