Court checks lithium-mining momentum in Argentina


Lithium plant operated by Posco of Korea at Dead Man’s Salt Flats, Argentina. (Photo courtesy of Argentine Chamber of Mining Companies)

The international press has made prominent mention of Argentine President Javier Milei’s support for expanded mining of lithium, a key ingredient in electric-vehicle batteries, and of his budding friendship with Tesla CEO Elon Musk, a potential beneficiary of that policy. Proof of the right-wing Milei’s leanings is making its way through Argentina’s Congress: a bill he filed that would grant 30-year tax breaks to investors who put up at least US$200 million for lithium mining, oil extraction or other big projects. Less well-known is that lithium mining in Argentina is experiencing pushback, as evidenced by a March 13 court ruling by the Supreme Court of the northwestern province of Catamarca. Argentine Indigenous and environmental organizations are applauding that decision, which blocks new lithium projects in Catamarca’s Dead Man’s Salt Flats—an arid, 60,000-hectare (148,000-acre) expanse 4,000 meters (13,000 feet) above sea level—pending... [Log in to read more]

Would you like to Subscribe?