A project to build the United Kingdom’s first large-scale commercial lithium refinery received this week £1.6 million in seed round funding, closing at more than five times the initial target amount requested by Green Lithium, the company behind the initiative.
The cash injection adds up to the £600,000 the firm had already received from the UK Government’s Automotive Transformation Fund back in April.
According to Green Lithium, the seed round capital will be used to fund raw material laboratory test-work analyses, which are already underway; planning and environmental scoping and baseline surveys; ground investigation; and other activities relating to the early development phase of the project.
Green Lithium’s goal is to build and operate a 50,000 tonne-per-annum refinery that will produce enough lithium hydroxide to enable the manufacturing of more than 1 million EVs per year
In a media statement, the London-based company said its goal is to build and operate a 50,000 tonne-per-annum refinery that will produce enough lithium hydroxide to enable the manufacturing of more than 1 million electric vehicles per year.
Green Lithium also said that its plan is to use an industry-leading, sustainable and low-carbon refining process that offers an alternative to the traditional route of sulphuric acid roasting and leaching via the caustic process. The development is expected to connect the UK’s and Europe’s lithium battery and cell manufacturers with abundant international sources of raw lithium material.
“The electric vehicle revolution, which will be crucial in the transition to ‘net-zero,’ requires a significant increase and diversification in the supply of low-carbon, battery-grade lithium hydroxide,” Richard Taylor, founding director at Green Lithium, said in the press brief. “It is estimated that growth of more than 400% in supply is needed over the next 10 years, however current and planned refining capacity will fall short in achieving this. Green Lithium intends to help meet what would otherwise be unmet demand in an underserved market. The fact that our seed funding round was more than five times oversubscribed reflects the scale and attractiveness of the opportunity.”