Western Lithium Commences Additional Drilling in Nevada to Support Long Term Lithium Carbonate Production
10 September 2009
Western Lithium Corporation has commenced drilling on the Stage II clay lens of its Kings Valley, Nevada lithium property. The purpose of this drilling is to determine if additional years of National Instrument 43-101 compliant mine life can be added to the proposed project. According to the original Chevron data, the Stage II lens is approximately seven times larger than Stage I lens, so only a portion of the lens will be drilled at this time.
Western Lithium is developing the Kings Valley, Nevada lithium deposit into potentially one of the world’s largest strategic, scalable and reliable sources of high quality lithium carbonate. The Company is positioning itself as a major US-based supplier to support the rising global demand for lithium carbonate that is expected from the increased use of mobile electronics and hybrid/electric vehicles.
(National Instrument 43-101 is a mineral resource classification scheme used for the public disclosure of information relating to mineral properties in Canada. Western Lithium is based in Vancouver, BC, and is listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange.)
This drilling program is intended to continue to confirm the earlier Chevron work and support our staged development plan for the project. We are positioning our project in Nevada to become a major center and United States-based strategic supplier of high quality lithium carbonate for the next generation of lithium-ion battery powered transportation and mobile electronics.—Jay Chmelauskas, Western Lithium’s President
The Stage II drilling is intended to provide additional confirmation of the historical resource originally drilled by Chevron Resources in the 1980s. The drilling, on a portion of the Stage II lens, is expected to take approximately two months to complete and will consist of 38 core drill holes in the main central portion of the lens.
Drilling of Stage I in 2008 focused on only one of five mineralized lenses and the results supported the work previously carried out by Chevron. A National Instrument 43-101 resource estimate has been completed for the initial Stage I lens which contains Indicated Resources of 48.1 million tonnes grading 0.27% lithium, or the lithium carbonate equivalent (LCE) of 688,000 tonnes LCE and Inferred Resources of 42.3 million tonnes grading 0.27% lithium, for an equivalent of 606,000 tonnes LCE, both at a cut-off grade of 0.20% Lithium.
The cost of this drilling program is expected to be approximately $800,000 and is in addition to the previously announced Stage I drilling and trenching program planned for 2009.
Interesting. The webpage of Western Lithium informs that this Nevada based mine contains a total of 11 million tones of lithium carbonate. Another webpage (see links below) informs that 85% of the Nevada resource is minable so about 9.35 million ton of lithium carbonate. To get this into perspective it requires 0.6kg of lithium carbonate to produce 1 kWh of lithium batteries (may vary from chemistry to chemistry but roughly so). In other words the Nevada site could be used to produce ((1000/0.6)*9.35) = 15.6 billion kWh of lithium batteries or about 1 billion Volt PHEVs or 650 million Nissan Leaf EVs.
And that was just one possible mine in the US. Countries like Chile still has the cheapest lithium carbonate on the planet and can mine it for about 2000 USD per ton. This is also possible in Tibet and Bolivia. At 10.000 USD per ton the Nevada site is probably good business. That price will still only be (10000/(1000/0.6)) = 6 USD worth of lithium carbonate for 1 kWh of lithium battery that currently cost minimum 300 USD to produce.
Posted by: Account Deleted | 10 September 2009 at 03:47 AM
Great post Henrik. Thanks for the links.
Posted by: clett | 10 September 2009 at 06:02 AM
Posted by: kelly | 10 September 2009 at 08:28 AM
So, this means that the U.S. has an adequate domestic supply of lithium for the immediate future, and the fearmongering about swapping dependence on foreign oil for dependence on foreign batteries is bunk. We can build a domestic battery industry and if push comes to shove and we can't get cheaper foreign lithium, that we have enough of our own to support a thriving electric car industry.
Posted by: J.A.Turner | 10 September 2009 at 02:51 PM
.....and post lithium batteries may not even use lithium....
There will be no shortage of natural resources for future high energy density on-board e-storage units.
There certainly will be no shortage of clean electricity. Wind and Sun could supply many times what is needed.
The only shortage may be the collective will to do something about it.
Posted by: HarveyD | 11 September 2009 at 02:29 PM