Australia needs to step up its production and processing of lithium to help meet the high demand for that essential raw material for electric car batteries. Tesla chairman Robyn Denholm said this at a conference in Sydney.
Australia now accounts for about half of the world’s unprocessed lithium production but has limited refining capacity for that metal. Denholm says the country needs to add additional capacity to increase production and take advantage of its important position in the lithium market. “Australia has the minerals, not just lithium, and the knowledge to harness the potential of this new age in energy.”
The Tesla CEO said lithium-ion batteries for electric cars are now the most critical technology. “To meet the challenge of climate change, the entire industry needs to scale up at a sprint pace,” Denholm said at the Australian Clean Energy Summit.
The chairman of Tesla, who is of Australian descent, said that Australia needs to develop standards to boost electric car sales. Last year, electric cars accounted for 2.4 percent of the country’s total new passenger car sales. That is less than in the United States and Europe.