In The News

Storymap: Power and Promise Beneath the Salton Sea

California’s Salton Sea region has even more lithium than previously thought, according to a new report led by researchers at Berkeley Lab, UC Davis, and UC Riverside, for the DOE Geothermal Technologies Office (GTO). Their analysis showed that the region’s resources are expected to contain approximately 3,400 kilotons of lithium, enough to support over 375 million batteries for EV’s—more than the total number of vehicles currently on U.S. roads. This visual interactive story map describes the work.

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What do frontline communities want to know about lithium extraction?

Clean energy technologies provide global benefits through climate mitigation and many local environmental benefits for consumers. However, the supply chains that produce them inevitably impose some environmental burden on the communities where they operate. To align with the principles of environmental justice, the burdens and benefits of clean energy supply chains should be distributed equitably, with decision-making processes that empower local communities to participate.

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Balancing a Battery-Powered Future With Energy Justice

As a new graduate student embarking on a master’s degree at the UC Davis Energy and Efficiency Institute in 2018, Meg Slattery was struck by how centrally batteries – particularly the rechargeable lithium-ion batteries in electric cars – figured into California’s decarbonization strategy.

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DOE Announces $140 Million for Research on Chemical and Materials Sciences to Advance Clean Energy Technologies and Low-Carbon Manufacturing

The multidisciplinary MINES program will establish fundamental science for the synthesis of battery materials from natural resources, enabling a new ‘separation-by-synthesis’ paradigm for energy storage manufacturing. We will address outstanding knowledge gaps related to synthesis in multicomponent systems, for which manifold component interactions control driving forces and transformation pathways in complex ways, and governing relationships are impossible to visualize or intuit in their entirety. Our interdisciplinary expertise and existing collaborative partnerships provide a strong basis to achieve progress towards material- and energy efficient low-carbon manufacturing for energy storage.

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Researchers at Berkeley Lab met with U.S. DOE Secretary Jennifer Granholm

Researchers at Berkeley Lab met with U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Jennifer Granholm last week to discuss the #lithium potential at the Salton Sea geothermal field in Lithium Valley. This critical mineral is the primary potential #geothermal resource for lithium in the U.S., according to Patrick Dobson, who leads a project to quantify how much lithium exists there and how to source it in an environmentally sustainable way.

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Getting to Net Zero – and Even Net Negative – is Surprisingly Feasible, and Affordable

Researchers from EESA and the Energy Technologies Area (ETA) met with U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm during her visit to Berkeley Lab for a DOE Advisory Board meeting. They discussed with her their work analyzing the lithium resource potential at the Salton Sea Geothermal Field. The project led by Pat Dobson, Geothermal Systems Program Lead, aims to quantify how much of that lithium can be extracted in a sustainable way. Pictured above: Mike Whittaker, Will Stringfellow, Veronica Rodriguez Tribaldos, Secretary Granholm, Nori Nakata, Pat Dobson, and Dev Millstein.

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