Serbia has 1.51 percent of the world’s lithium reserves, News
According to the research of the US Geological Institute, published in February, the total reserves of lithium on the globe are 79.36 million tons, and the record holder is Bolivia with 21 million tons of this metal, while Serbia is in 11th place with 1.2 million tons. Before us are 10 countries from all continents, including two from Europe, Germany and the Czech Republic.
This practically means that these data dispelled the long-standing Serbian myth that as much as 10 percent of the world’s resources of this metal are located in our country, in the Jadar Valley, because this research shows that we have only 1.51 percent of total reserves. The record holder is Bolivia with 26.46 percent, followed by Argentina, which has 24.30 percent with 19.30 million tons, and Chile with 9.60 million tons, or 12.10 percent. Behind them, and before us, are Australia, China, Congo, Canada, Germany, Mexico and the Czech Republic.
From these global data, which included 24 countries from all continents, it can be seen that we are not even record holders in Europe, because before us with 2.7 million tons of lithium reserves are Germany, which is 3.4 percent of world resources and the Czech Republic with 1.3 million tons or 1.64 percent.
These data were recently confirmed by Dusan Podunavac, a graduate engineer of geology and an expert in mineral research.
– In the valley of the river Jadar in 2004, the Australian-British company Rio Tinto found a new mineral, called jadarite, after the river Jadar, in which it was found. It is a complex lithium-boron ore, according to its chemical composition it is sodium-lithium-borate, boron hydride. It is one of the ores from which boron and lithium are obtained. According to the Geological Institute of the USA, this resource of 1.2 million tons of ours is on the third position in Europe, and in the world exploitation the leading countries are South America, Chile, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil – Podunavac said for RTS.
He did not comment on why such a sudden change in the data, and we were not able to get an official comment from several professors of the Faculty of Mining and Geology, whom we contacted, because they did not want to comment without the permission of the administration Ink. Unofficially, we were told that these data were changing due to “continuous research, which identified lithium resources, so they increased significantly around the world, which then diminishes the importance of those discovered in Serbia.
However, it is a little illogical that in such a short time, this mineral wealth will increase sharply in the world and condition our steep decline from 10 to 1.51 percent of resources.
Zvezdan Kalmar from the Coalition for Sustainable Mining in Serbia (KORS) says that the data from the US Geological Institute should not be doubted because they are accurate.
– That data on the possession of 10% of the world’s ore reserves in Jadar came from Rio Tinto. What is important, and it is not mentioned, those reserves are qualified at the level of B and C categories, not A, which means that they were explored at a low level of probability of 30 to 60 percent. I responsibly claim that Rio Tinto deliberately increased resources in order to increase the price of its shares, based on stories about the largest deposit in the world, without a gram of excavated lithium, which can be seen from stock market data in the last 10 years – Kalmar said.
He adds that the data on the largest lithium deposit in the world, years ago, was consciously placed by Rio Tinto, without certified ore reserves by the competent commission of the Ministry of Mining.
– Those balances were verified at the beginning of this year, much later than the one about the Serbian kryptonite from the novels and movies about Superman. In other words, the competent Commission of the Ministry of Mining certified them only after the New Year, a few months later from the adoption of the spatial plan for the Jadar mine, which is illegal. I do not doubt the validity of the work of that commission, but the parameters for the assessment of ore resources are outdated and are based on a document that was adopted in 1979, so those assessments can be unreliable – Kalmar explains.
The Rio Tinto brochure states that the certificate on resources and reserves was obtained from the Commission of the Government of Serbia on January 6, 2021.
– It was obtained on the basis of a study on resources and reserves submitted as of July 31, 2020. Previously, on December 10, 2020, the results were published in accordance with the York Code, the Australian standard for reporting on the results of geological research, mineral resources and ore reserves, which is the obligation of companies listed on the stock exchange. These exploration activities differ from engineering-geological research for the needs of construction and infrastructure facilities, which are performed in accordance with the Law on Planning and Construction, and which are performed in parallel, and will also be performed in the future – states Rio Tinto, Blic reports.
Country lithium resources in tons percentage share globally
Bolivia 21 million, 26.46%
Argentina 19.3 million, 24.32%
Chile 9.6 million, 12.10%
Australia 6.4 million, 8.06%
China 5.1 million, 6.43%
Congo 3 million, 3.78%
Canada 2.9 million, 3.65%
Germany 2.7 million, 3.40%
Mexico 1.7 million, 2.14%
Czech Republic 1.3 million, 1.64%
Serbia 1.2 million, 1.51%