Lithium mine in Chile

Lithium mining is more environmentally destructive than the materials it aims to replace.

There’s an emerging consensus that decarbonizing the world’s electrical systems rely on scarce rare Earth minerals in unstable countries that are equally as harmful to the environment as the materials they aim to replace.

Water-based car battery

Water based batteries could replace the need for rare Earth minerals in EVs.

But now a new water-based cell with 1,000 times more capacity than comparable metal-based power cells could transform how batteries are both used and produced, according to researchers at Texas A&M University.

Shaun Polczer is the Business Reporter for the Western Standard, based in Calgary. Formerly, a business reporter for the Calgary Herald, he has also held senior positions at the Daily Oil Bulletin, and the London Petroleum Economist. 

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(6) comments


If it's too cheap & effective it will be shut down by the regime unfortunately.


I'm all for battery powered 'anything' as long as it makes sense and if a new battery technology becomes available to replace lithium, even better. The problem is that everything and everyone is focused on lithium being the holy gral and safe, cheap and reliable alternatives are going to have it tough right now. BTW., CO2 is not a pollutant. If it was then greenhouses would have to triple the amount of CO2 to promote and optimize plant growth.


'With Western nations such as the US and Canada relying on rare Earth minerals such as lithium to decarbonize their electrical and transportation systems'. There is no 'decarbonaization' . That is unless you believe what the professional liars aka politicians, journalists and activists keep telling you. Other than a rudiemtary and irrelevant percentage of light cars, nobody is buying them. And you can forget about electric vehicles forming any relevant percentage of medium duty and heavy duty trucks, ships and planes. That's after decades of 'investment' and pushing propaganda. The power grid in western countries has been polluted by wind and solar farms to a now significant PAPER capacity. The real world generating capacity is much less, low 30's % duty cycle at best The real inconvenient truth is any wind farm or solar farm must be backed up by excess natgas/coal/nuc/hydro capacity whether in place locally or importable. There is no replacement for hydrocarbons in power generation, excpt nuclear. And there most definitely is no replacement at all for hydrocarbons in transport that has the energy density, economy of scale and reliablity. There. Is. Not.

Maybe the Western Standard could cover the relevancy of the entire false narrative of 'Decarbonaization'. Try reporting the other side. If nobody in the media pushes back, as an electrical engineer, I can tell you, 'decarbonization' means failing power grid, rolling blackouts, power rationing, flickering lights andpower lockdowns.


Plus more than triple the electricity costs as we still see from the Notley solar/wind projects when the NDP were in power. Transmission costs are horrendous because they are idle much of the time, especially when really needed...January when the power from the sun is low and time limited...and the air is still!


Good points. Here on the cloudy west coast we only get good solar energy for about 3 months.

That’s when there are long days and we don’t need energy for lighting or heating. Plus it’s rarely hot enough to need air conditioning.

Questionable energy source that only supplies power when you don’t need it.

Also, solar panels have a fairly short lifespan and recycling the components is not yet possible. More landfill.


I am interested in what the efficiency ratio would be of generating electricity with hydro carbons and sending that power 100 miles, stepping it down to household voltage, charging a lithium ion battery and then seeing how many kilowatts you get out of that battery compared to how many kilowatts of energy were used at the power plant.

My wild guess would be maybe 25 %. What do you think?

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