The Government of Canada announced an investment of $27 million to Calgary-based E3 Lithium to support the construction of a demonstration plant.
The investment comes from Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada’s Strategic Innovation Fund.
The plan for the company is to complete the construction of the demonstration plant to prove the commercial viability of lithium production in Alberta.
Once demonstrated, the company plans to build a full-scale production plant that can produce up to 20,000 tonnes of battery-grade lithium per year.
E3 Lithium President and CEO Chris Doornbos had this to say about the announcement:
The breadth of the development costs this funding covers contributes significantly to the de-risking of our end-to-end project development as we progress towards a commercial facility producing battery-grade lithium in Alberta. The Canadian government has committed to supporting the critical minerals supply chain. Growing local Canadian supply begins with the raw materials, and Alberta has a significant part to play in that future.
E3 Lithium will extract lithium via wells in the Leduc oilfield and is planning to produce lithium hydroxide from the high-grade lithium concentrate.
In addition to government funding, Imperial Oil has also invested in the company and provides technical and development support for the start-up.