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Vulcan Energy Resources, the billion-dollar zero-carbon lithium contender backed by Gina Rinehart, announced another deal to sell its minerals ahead of the company’s AGM today.

Vulcan said it has signed a binding lithium hydroxide mining agreement for a minimum of 81,000 tonnes and a maximum of 99,000 tonnes of battery grade lithium hydroxide over the term of a five-year agreement beginning in 2026, when he hopes to have started production.

According to Vulcan, lithium hydroxide will be used by all three Stellantis battery production plants in Europe – in Termoli, Italy, and the Automotive Cells Company (ACC) joint venture plants in Kaiserslautern, Germany, and Douvrin, in France.

Brine is already a source of lithium for South American companies, where this Bolivian mine is based. Credit:Reuters

“The three plants combined will produce at least 120 gigawatt hours of cellular capacity by 2030,” he says.

The big obstacle remains its ability to raise the billions needed to become operational by then.

Lithium is the key ingredient in batteries for electric vehicles, which finally appear to be on the verge of gaining the upper hand over their gasoline rivals.

Electric vehicles are mandated to completely replace gasoline-powered cars in the UK and German markets during the decade, and in other major economies in the following years.

Vulcan plans to produce carbon-free lithium from hot underground sources in the Upper Rhine Valley in Germany. It also plans to use thermal energy – generated by boiling water from which it extracts lithium – to ensure the carbon neutrality of its operations when production starts in 2024.

Vulcan shares last traded at $ 10.25. The stock was trading at 27 cents in April of last year before the market skyrocketed lithium stocks. The company was the target of a recent report by short seller J Capital, which questioned the technology and the company’s ability to produce lithium.

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