Bummer: The Rush To Force People To Buy Electric Vehicles Leads To Destructive Mining

The UK Guardian, as you might know, is one of the world’s biggest news outlets that supports the Cult of Climastrology. They make no attempt to hide their belief in Doing Something about ‘climate change’ before it destroys the world. And they’ve been big cheerleaders for EVs. However

The rush to ‘go electric’ comes with a hidden cost: destructive lithium mining

electric vehicleThe Atacama salt flat is a majestic, high-altitude expanse of gradations of white and grey, peppered with red lagoons and ringed by towering volcanoes. It took me a moment to get my bearings on my first visit, standing on this windswept plateau of 3,000 sq km (1,200 sq miles). A vertiginous drive had taken me and two other researchers through a sandstorm, a rainstorm, and the peaks and valleys of this mountainous region of northern Chile. The sun bore down on us intensely – the Atacama desert boasts the Earth’s highest levels of solar radiation, and only parts of Antarctica are drier.

I had come to the salt flat to research an emerging environmental dilemma. In order to stave off the worst of the accelerating climate crisis, we need to rapidly reduce carbon emissions. To do so, energy systems around the world must transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy. Lithium batteries play a key role in this transition: they power electric vehicles and store energy on renewable grids, helping to cut emissions from transportation and energy sectors. Underneath the Atacama salt flat lies most of the world’s lithium reserves; Chile currently supplies almost a quarter of the global market. But extracting lithium from this unique landscape comes at a grave environmental and social cost.

Wait, writer Thea Riofrancos traveled from Providence College to Chile? Did he/she do this without the use of fossil fuels?

In the mining installations, which occupy more than 78 sq km (30 sq miles) and are operated by multinationals SQM and Albemarle, brine is pumped to the surface and arrayed in evaporation ponds resulting in a lithium-rich concentrate; viewed from above, the pools are shades of chartreuse. The entire process uses enormous quantities of water in an already parched environment. As a result, freshwater is less accessible to the 18 indigenous Atacameño communities that live on the flat’s perimeter, and the habitats of species such as Andean flamingoes have been disrupted. This situation is exacerbated by climate breakdown-induced drought and the effects of extracting and processing copper, of which Chile is the world’s top producer. Compounding these environmental harms, the Chilean state has not always enforced indigenous people’s right to prior consent.

These facts raise an uncomfortable question that reverberates around the world: does fighting the climate crisis mean sacrificing communities and ecosystems? The supply chains that produce green technologies begin in extractive frontiers like the Atacama desert. And we are on the verge of a global boom in mining linked to the energy transition. A recent report published by the International Energy Agency states that meeting the Paris greement’s climate targets would send demand skyrocketing for the “critical minerals” used to produce clean energy technologies. The figures are particularly dramatic for the raw materials used to manufacture electric vehicles: by 2040, the IEA forecasts that demand for lithium will have increased 42 times relative to 2020 levels.

Apparently, the answer to the question is “yes.” Most of this stuff happens far from the eyes of the 1st World uber-white Warmists. Of course, once they figure this all out, they’ll want to restrict EVs to themselves, and not in 3rd world nations. Anyhow, it is a very interesting and well written article when you read it from an environmental point of view, understanding the destruction caused by all the mining and such necessary to do all these “green” projects.

A transportation system based on individual electric vehicles, for example, with landscapes dominated by highways and suburban sprawl, is much more resource- and energy-intensive than one that favours mass transit and alternatives such as walking and cycling. Likewise, lowering overall energy demand would reduce the material footprint of technologies and infrastructure that connect homes and workplaces to the electricity grid. And not all demand for battery minerals must be sated with new mining: recycling and recovering metals from spent batteries is a promising replacement, especially if governments invest in recycling infrastructure and make manufacturers use recycled content.

But, Warmists do want to force Everyone Else out of their individual vehicles.

Chilean activists are clear: there is no zero-sum conflict between fighting climate breakdown and preserving local environments and livelihoods. Indigenous communities in the Atacama desert are also on the frontlines of the devastating impacts of global heating. Rather than an excuse to intensify mining, the accelerating climate crisis should be an impetus to transform the rapacious and environmentally harmful patterns of production and consumption that caused this crisis in the first place.

How? The article discusses all the environmental destruction, but, is rather short on how to avoid it. Regardless, it is something that so many of us Skeptics have noted for a long time, namely that “green” stuff, meaning for the climate crisis (scam), is not particularly environmentally friendly.

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18 Responses to “Bummer: The Rush To Force People To Buy Electric Vehicles Leads To Destructive Mining”

  1. alanstorm says:

    “The rush to ‘go electric’ comes with a hidden cost: destructive lithium mining”

    If this is something you couldn’t see coming a mile away, don’t vote, breed or operate heavy machinery.

    “There are no solutions, only tradeoffs.”

    – massive truth from Thomas Sowell, that liberals can’t ever seem to learn.

    Wait until they realize all the nuclear plants and transmission lines that “clean” EVs will require.

  2. Elwood P. Dowd says:

    All sources of energy have costs not reflected in the market price. These costs can be economic, social or environmental. And they don’t have to be “hidden”.

    Renewables have significant environmental costs, windmills are monstrosities, solar panels consume resources, batteries (as mentioned) consume resources and destroy habitats.

    Nuclear is expensive, nearly impossible to insure except by gov’t, potentially catastrophic.

    Hydroelectric dams flood thousands of acres and like renewables are at the mercy of the elements (check how Lake Mead is doing).

    Fossil fuels cause cancer, used to contribute to lead poisoning, destroys habitats AND contributes to long term global warming.

    The responsible action is to include these costs in the market price, until we find an infinite source of unobtainium.

    Pick your poison.

  3. david7134 says:

    Jeff,
    Very stupid series of statements. Your analysis of fossil fuels is all wrong. Then you did not mention that green energy is not green and the byproduct is worse than nuclear.

    • drowningpuppies says:

      Rimjob thinks he’s clever, dipshit that he is.

      #YouMyNiggaBarack
      Bwaha! Lolgf https://www.thepiratescove.us/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cool.gif

    • Elwood P. Dowd says:

      Doogie Hoser DC is upset. Idiots are easily upset.

      • alanstorm says:

        Idiots are easily upset.

        As you prove continually prove.

      • david7134 says:

        Jeff,
        I am sorry, you just don’t get me upset. My view of you is the same I have of a steaming pile of dog shit, you are just repulsive. I know you are mentally ill and try my best to make sure everyone here is aware of this as well.

        • Professor Hale says:

          David,
          That is just unfair. Jeff is no more repulsive or dog shit than the democratic party talking points he dutifully parrots. If anything, like a good golden retriever, his loyalty to his master should merit him some respect. All dogs go to heaven.

  4. Dana says:

    In the Star Trek original series “Mudd’s Women,” Harcourt Fenton Mudd tries to sell the ‘wives’ in whom he is trafficking on settling down with the “lonely, rich lithium miners.” Of course, he rolls his tongue at the word “rich” in a way that italics can never quite convey, and by “lithium” he actually means dilithium crystals, necessary for channeling the anti-matter streams which power warp drives, but still, the word stuck in my eidetic memory.

    As the global warming climate change emergency activists keep pushing battery-powered cars, the materials for batteries will see greatly increased demand, and we’ll have to go get the materials. More than half of the world’s cobalt production comes from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and children as young as seven have been pressed into service in the mines.

    But the white liberals won’t care, because those children are only Negroes.

  5. Hairy says:

    Lithoum batteries are already dated
    Sodium batteries are already on the horizon
    Trump’s and Teach’s “beautiful clean coal” is going bankrupt here in the USA
    The largest lithium producer by far (6 times China) is Australia

    • david7134 says:

      John,
      Last I remember, you were a big Union man. Yet you are happy that the coal industry is suffering and your Union brothers are hurting, same for the pipelines. And why? All over a silly hypothesis that a trace gas in the atmosphere is causing climate warming, which is nothing but a series of computer models, that have proven nothing. We had one year of drastically reduced fossil fuel use and the result….nothing. If we had an issue with CO2, then governments would push for an answer. Instead they push for remedies that raise taxes and establish a system of carbon control that is the wet dream of our tyrannical leaders. Your battery alternative is an environmental nightmare. I really don’t think you have the intelligence to understand your positions.

    • Kye says:

      Sodium batteries are not yet feasible so they mean nothing at this time.

      Coal is not going bankrupt here in the USA, it’s being driven bankrupt by rich leftists who don’t care about the price paid by the poor and working class (as usual).

      You and the Red commenter constantly refer back to Trump over everything, when will you have your TDS treated by a professional? I realize you’re in a constant quandary to justify your stolen election but the literally insane obsession with Trump has become a psychotic break with the corrupt reality you and your commie friends have created.

      I watch CNN two days a week (so my friends don’t have to) and you guys exactly follow their insane constant Trump drumbeat. Just look at the silly coverage of the summit, it’s blatant bullshit in broad day light. You guys still think Russia is the communist empire it once was. That position now belongs to Washington.

      Way to go, Joey!

      • Dana says:

        My good friend, the Rt Rev Hoagie, got it wrong:

        Coal is not going bankrupt here in the USA, it’s being driven bankrupt by rich leftists who don’t care about the price paid by the poor and working class (as usual).

        Alas, that’s not quite correct. With the advent of hydraulic fracturing, natural gas reserves which were previously unreachable have flourished, and natural gas became cheaper than coal. Since natural gas burns cleaner than coal, there were reductions in pollution control costs as well.

        • Professor Hale says:

          This is an example of a real “market-based” solution. Unlike artificial trades in Carbon credits and government mandated buying and selling of things no one wants or needs.

  6. Kye says:

    My mistake Mr. Dana. I once again was foiled by taking Obummers word for it when he stated “they can open a coal mine but they will “necessarily go broke.” (or something to that point). Taking liars at their word always proves ill advised.

    • Kye says:

      But wait. Wasn’t closing coal mines also part of the fake leaders 100 days of Fascism? Was that market driven or fascist driven? Were those unemployed union miners victims of “the market” or demofasfists?

      • Dana says:

        It was partly propaganda; the coal industry has been failing in the United States for a while now, for economic reasons.

        Eastern Kentucky has been devastated economically by the collapse of the coal industry. A thriving industry on which the population depended for decades is almost entirely gone now, leaving the area with minimum wage jobs and welfare.

        The nearest town to me, Ravenna, has a huge rail yard, developed to service the transportation of coal; it’s almost abandoned. The Kentucky River, on which my property borders, has a series of locks, to enable commercial traffic, mainly coal barges; that ceased in the 1980s.

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