02 Oct £1.4m raised by Crowdfund to target Lithium in Cornwall
A Cornish company has completed a successful crowd funding campaign to expand lithium exploration and create a sustainable supply chain in the UK.
Cornish Lithium has raised another £1.4m from over 1,200 new investors, many of whom are based in Cornwall, via a crowdfunding campaign on the equity platform Crowdcube.
Launched in July, it is believed to be the first successful crowdfunding campaign by a British mineral exploration company, offering a role in securing strategic UK mineral supplies. Cornish Lithium will drill its first exploration holes targeting lithium in geothermal waters deep beneath the surface of Cornwall with the funds raised.
In January Cornish Lithium announced it had raised a further £1 million from its existing investors.
The Company also plans to investigate the possibility of combining geothermal energy and lithium extraction. They will continue to evaluate the potential for lithium extraction from hard-rock sources in Cornwall, particularly in an area where a lithium mine is understood to have operated during World War II.
“We are delighted to have now closed our crowdfunding and to welcome over 1,200 new investors to Cornish Lithium. We are excited to commence our exploratory drill programme later this year and to move our project to the next stage.
“We continue to believe that Cornwall holds significant potential to supply UK industry with the lithium needed to build electric cars and power storage batteries. This will enable the carbon footprint of batteries assembled in the UK to be minimised given that the necessary raw materials will not have to be imported from thousands of miles away.
“Domestic production of lithium and other battery metals would also reduce the dependency of the UK economy on imports and has the potential to create significant employment in Cornwall.”
The Company continues to add to its portfolio of mineral rights agreements – now currently across more than 500 square kilometres – and has recently acquired extensive archive material of historic exploration and mining activities.
First exploration holes identified
Using data from its geological models, Cornish Lithium has identified sites where, in late October, it plans to drill its first exploration holes. The holes will be drilled into prospective areas where geothermal waters are believed to exist at target depths of 800 metres to 1000 metres. Data collected will be used to assist the Company in determining whether it is possible to exploit lithium from these geothermal waters.
Cornwall’s geology is once again offering opportunities for large scale industry and employment. The UK’s first Geothermal Power Plant will open at United Downs near Redruth in a couple of years, another lithium company MetAmpere have announced staggeringly good results from exploration drill holes at a site near St Austell and millions are being invested in South Crofty to re-open the iconic tin mine in Pool.
Lithium batteries are seen as key to any global energy demands that won’t rely on fossil fuels.
A crucial contributor to meeting the UK 2050 zero emissions target is the development of a new generation of cars and vans that don’t use petrol or diesel.
The global change to electric vehicles is not only driving the development and efficiency of lithium batteries but also the need for the metal itself. Because of this, Goldman Sachs called it “the new gasoline” and suggests demand could triple by 2025.
Lithium is a soft silvery alkali metal, the lightest metal and the lightest solid element. The need for lithium has never been stronger. There are many other uses apart from car batteries from phones and fridges to aeroplanes and industry robots, which should see a global ‘lithium rush’ in the forseeable future.
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