'How South America's Lithium Triangle Is Gearing Up to Feed Our Battery Addiction'

'‘White petroleum’ powers everything from electric cars to mobile phones, and half the earth’s resources come from the salt flats of Chile, Argentina and Bolivia'

First Published By: Rosalba O’Brien, The Guardian

"Far from the soy and cattle that dominate its vast fertile pampas, Argentina harbours another valuable commodity that is rocketing in price and demand and luring newly welcomed foreign investors."

"Lithium, the so-called “white petroleum”, drives much of the modern world. It forms a small but essentially irreplaceable component of rechargeable batteries, used in consumer devices like mobile phones and electric cars. It also has pharmaceutical and other applications. Over half of the earth’s identified resources of the mineral are found in South America’s “lithium triangle”, an otherworldly landscape of high-altitude lakes and bright white salt flats that straddles Chile, Argentina and Bolivia."

"Until recently, that was not great news for investors. Argentina and Bolivia lacked predictability and a friendly business environment, while Chile kept strict control over lithium output. But that may be all about to change."

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Salt flats