ExxonMobil is launch into lithium production, aiming for significant market share by launching its first operation in southern Arkansas. Facing growing demand for lithium in the technology and electric vehicle sectors, ExxonMobil aims to begin production by 2027. By 2030, the company plans to produce enough lithium to power more than a million of electric vehicles per year. From a report: Earlier this year, ExxonMobil purchased 120,000 acres of lithium-rich land spanning a geologic formation – called the Smackover Formation – in Arkansas. To access the lithium, the company will first drill 10,000 feet below the surface using gas and oil machines. From there, it will then use direct lithium extraction (DLE) to separate the lithium from the salt water it is mixed with. Once this is done, ExxonMobil will reinject the salt water into the ground.
ExxonMobil says the DLE process “produces fewer carbon emissions than hard rock mining and requires significantly less land.” The company will produce the battery-grade lithium on site, which it will call Mobil Lithium. Technically, this isn’t the first time ExxonMobil has been involved in the battery business, as the company manufactured the first lithium-ion battery in the 1970s.