India (February 10): Huge amounts of lithium reserves have been found for the first time in Jammu and Kashmir. Lithium is a non-ferrous metal and is one of the key components in EV batteries.
So far, India has depended on Australia and Argentina for lithium imports. The Geological Survey of India found the lithium reserves in the Salal-Haimana area of Reasi district in Jammu and Kashmir, India's Ministry of Mines said.
As much as 5.9m tonnes of the mineral have been discovered in Jammu and Kashmir. In 2021, much smaller deposits of the mineral were found in the southern state of Karnataka.
"For the first time, lithium reserves have been discovered and that too in Jammu and Kashmir," Mines Secretary Vivek Bharadwaj said. Earlier, the government had said that it was looking to improve its supply of rare metals needed to boost new technologies and was looking for sources in India and abroad.
Around the world the demand for rare metals, including lithium, has increased as countries look to adopt greener solutions to slow down climate change.
Lithium is extracted from hard rocks and underground brine reservoirs largely found in Australia, Chile and Argentina.
After the mineral is mined, it is roasted using fossil fuels, searing the landscape and leaving behind scars.
The extraction process also requires a lot of water and releases large amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. According to the World Bank, mining of crucial minerals will need to increase by 500% to meet global climate targets by 2050.
However, experts say that the process of mining lithium is not environment-friendly. (Agencies)