Electric car batteries require about 6 pounds of lithium. In regards to cars, lithium ion technology is expected to replace nickel metal hydride technology almost completely by 2020. By 2015, 50 percent of the auto market could be made up of hybrids and electric cars. The demand for lithium for car batteries is expected to increase greatly. Deutsche Bank expects global demand for lithium to be around 11,000 metric tons in 2012 and 90,000 metric tons in 2020.
The US presently imports more than half the lithium it consumes, mostly from Chile, which is also the world production leader at present, and Argentina. Bolivia is the nation with the largest resource of lithium. Identified reserves of lithium in the US amount to less than 1% of known world reserves.
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