Lithium – new gold rush in the Andes

High in the Andes mountains, mining companies are gearing up for the massive extraction of lithium — the raw material of the future. Lithium batteries are used to power the electric vehicles that will play a key role in the new energy revolution.

Bolivia is home to the world’s largest lithium reserves, including a huge deposit buried under the crust of the huge Salar De Uyuni salt flat. Some German investors are trying to set up a joint venture to extract litihum there, but haven’t yet worked out a deal with Bolivia’s government.

In our documentary, ARD Latin America correspondent Matthias Ebert provides an in-depth look at the technical- and environmental problems involved in lithium mining in the Andes. He also reports on the efforts of local residents to win a fair share of the profits.

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