There is a paradigm shift happening right now. The way we humans use energy, store it, and think about it is being transformed by new technology and applications. Hydrocarbons are a store of energy, and they have powered the world for over a century. However, to release energy from hydrocarbons it needs to be burned. The burning process causes pollution, energy loss and still requires a mechanism to get that released energy to do a job. The question has long been, how do we get energy to be immediately available when we want it without the downside of burning? Lithium is the answer. The lithium-ion battery has a tremendous energy storage capacity relative to size/weight. By having that energy available when we need it, we can capture energy when we don’t. The simplest example is solar panels working during the day to power your lights at night. By storing energy efficiently and in a usable format, the possibilities for renewable energy generation open up dramatically. Wind, tidal, geothermal – all are sources of energy which become mainstream viable now that the issue of storing that energy for as-needed use is solved. Even in cases where we still use hydrocarbons, we can use them more efficiently and generate less pollution by using lithium-ion batteries. One major hydrocarbon-fired power plant transmitting electricity to households that charge multiple electric vehicles is much more efficient and generates less pollution than each of those vehicles running their own individual hydrocarbon-fired power plant. The promise of electric vehicles (EV) is the most visible aspect of the profound changes happening in the world today due to the energy paradigm shift being led by lithium-ion battery technology. Recent news regarding EV includes such headlines as:
- Volvo said it will only launch electric or hybrid cars from 2019
- VW commitment to launching more than 30 electric cars by 2025
- France will ban diesel and petrol cars by 2040
- Germany will impose a mandate for all new cars registered in the country to be emissions free by 2030
And so, we finish where we started. There is a massive paradigm shift ongoing. The very nature of energy is changing. Wealth Minerals is at the centre of it all, leading the charge to supply this paradigm shift with the lithium it needs.