The US company Albemarle Corp has accused its largest Chilean competitor, mining company SQM, and local regulators of hiding the report on the environmental impact of lithium mining in the Salar de Atacama salt plain.
Chilean regulator Corfo, which oversees lithium mining in the Atacama Desert, in August refused to issue a long-awaited report on the environmental impact of mining to the US mining company Albermarle Corp. He justified this by stating that the report was still under scrutiny and contained confidential business information.
The report aims to reduce the uncertainty surrounding the sustainability of lithium mining in the Salar de Atacama salt plain, where up to three-quarters of the strategic raw material currently traveling to the global market is being mined. At the same time, there are rare animal and plant species. Currently, the world’s largest miner, Albemarle, claims that its domestic competitor, SQM, has already had the opportunity to comment on the draft report. Unlike Albemarle.
According to Reuters, Albemarle will want to get the news legally and the whole case could have legal action. Lithium is a strategic raw material especially for the automotive industry, so it is no wonder that there is a hard fight for mining rights.