Cornwall to Welcome Lithium Mining Boom for UK's Green Battery Revolution
Cornwall to Welcome Lithium Mining Boom for UK's Green Battery Revolution

Cornwall to Welcome Lithium Mining Boom for UK's Green Battery Revolution

  • 20-Mar-2023 10:49 AM
  • Journalist: Patricia Jose Perez

UK: According to forecasts, the UK will require approximately 80,000 tons of Lithium by 2030. Of that, 40% could be sourced from under Cornwall.

Cornwall, known for its mineral-rich mines, could be making a triumphant return to the global metal market. After nearly 25 years since the last Tin mine closed, this time it's not just Tin that runs through the county's veins. As well as Copper and Tungsten, Lithium - an essential ingredient in batteries that power everything from phones to electric cars - is set to become one of Cornwall's major exports. With both local officials and investors setting their sights on the future potential of this industrial endeavor, it appears that Cornwall is well on its way to becoming Europe's top supplier of Lithium.

By 2030, Cornish Lithium and a handful of other forward-thinking companies on the British peninsular are expected to produce enough Lithium to meet more than one-third of the UK's Lithium needs. This comes just in time for the planned end of fossil-fuel vehicle production by 2026, with Cornish Lithium aspiring to extract 10,000 tons of Lithium annually by that point.

The UK Government forecasts that the nation will require 80,000 tons of Lithium by 2030. Nearly 40% of this could potentially be obtained from over 2,000 meters underground in Cornwall. British Lithium is looking to use sustainable and chemical-free mining methods to produce its battery grade Lithium carbonate from the mica in Cornish granite - a potential output of 21,000 tons yearly.

Tin mining in Cornwall dates back to 1800BC, when the area began to develop into an important producer of the metal, which forms bronze when mixed with Copper. For thousands of years Britain has been associated with Tin, but it is Cornwall's production and extraction that is gaining worldwide attention once again. Although Lithium may be dominating the news headlines, Tin mining in Cornwall is set to launch this historic region onto the world stage.

After more than a century, Cornwall's Tin and Copper mining industry is set to return in full force. Cornish Tin is reviving the Great Wheal Vor Mines, a site that was once considered by mining historian AK Hamilton Jenkin as "probably the richest Tin mine which has ever been worked in the world". The project involves 26 former mines located in Breage, and Chief Executive Sally Norcross-Webb is taking steps to ensure that the site will become globally significant yet again. This revival of Cornwall's industrial success follows the closure of its final mine back in 1998, an event that marked the end of an era for the county.

The electric vehicle and energy storage revolution is set to accelerate the demand for Tin by 2040. Tin is essential in the soldering of circuit boards of almost all tech products, leading experts to predict a fourfold increase in its usage.

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