FAST FIVE: "We Found Something Better Than Gold": Rio Tinto Starts Lithium Production In The US

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“We Found Something Better Than Gold”: Rio Tinto Starts Lithium Production In The US By, Rio Tinto has kicked off lithium production from waste rock at a plant located at a borates mine it controls in California.

The project comes at a time when the US is pushing to both encourage the electrification of vehicles and reduce the country's dependence on China for rare earths, lithium and other minerals needed for EV batteries.

Major leagues Rio Tinto invested $10 million to build the pilot plant that will be able to produce 10 tonnes a year of lithium-carbonate.

A feasibility study for the proposed mine is expected to be complete by the end of 2021, Rio said.

Lithium Americas is also advancing a major project that received final federal approval in January.

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