Sustainable Methods to Alleviate the Global Threat of Lithium

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Huang, Po-Wei
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Recently, the prevalence of mobile devices along with the rapid growth in the electric vehicles (EVs) industries has led to an unprecedented demand for LIBs. From 2010 to 2025, the global demand for lithium is projected to quadruple. In order to conform to the International Energy Agency’s Beyond 2 Degrees Scenario, the global EVs cumulative sales are expected to rise from 2 million in 2016 to 1.8 billion by 2060. That said, lithium is for sure one of the most important resources in the foreseeable future. Nowadays, a few countries in South America and Australia monopolize the lithium production; on the other hand, most countries that are developing state-of-the-art green technologies and promoting the use of renewable energy have limited lithium resources of their own and are heavily dependent on lithium imports. Aware of the insufficient of current lithium resources and the important role of stable lithium supply play in the development of a sustainable future, I came up with an idea of using battery materials to extract oceanic lithium. By applying the electrochemical lithium mining method, much more efficient extraction process can be achieved, the geographical limitation of lithium sources will be removed, and the negative environmental impact, which occurred in the conventional extraction process will be reduced. This electrochemical lithium mining method opens up a new opportunity to harvest ocean resources, produce economic value from natural resources, and promote the idea of utilizing eco-friendly technology to solve the grand energy challenge.
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