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California Governor visits Lithium Valley

Christian Fernsby |
California Governor Gavin Newsom visited on March 20 Imperial Valley to see the progress being made on transforming the Salton Sea region into a global hub for battery production, essential to the worldwide transition to zero-emission vehicles.

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California’s Imperial Valley contains some of the largest lithium deposits in the world, specifically underground near the Salton Sea, a region also known as Lithium Valley.

Experts believe Lithium Valley could provide enough lithium to meet all of America’s future demand and more than one-third of global demand – supercharging the transition to zero-emission vehicles.

During his visit, the Governor toured Controlled Thermal Resources in Imperial for a demonstration of safe lithium mining and battery production.

He also met with local elected officials, community groups and other stakeholders to discuss ways the state is putting the needs of local Imperial Valley communities first as the region undergoes significant economic transformation.

Earlier in the day, the Governor visited a project that is being implemented as part of the Salton Sea Management Program to enhance wetland habitat and improve public health and environmental conditions at the Salton Sea.

What Governor Newsom said: “We’re building a hub for global innovation while ensuring this transformation benefits communities right here in Imperial Valley.

"California is poised to become the world’s largest source of batteries, and it couldn’t come at a more crucial moment in our efforts to move away from fossil fuels. The future happens here first – and Lithium Valley is fast-tracking the world’s clean energy future.”

Last year, Governor Newsom signed legislation directing $5 million to Imperial County to support Lithium Valley, and created the Lithium Extraction Tax Law.

The new law ensures Imperial Valley communities are benefited by lithium extraction and are a significant part of the growing industry.

California is producing lithium in a more sustainable and environmentally safe way than nearly anywhere else in the world, by relying on modern extraction techniques rather than harmful hard rock mining or other traditional tools of extraction.


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