Lithium Mining Can Boost Michoacan’s Development, Says Governor
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Lithium Mining Can Boost Michoacan’s Development, Says Governor

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Fernando Mares By Fernando Mares | Journalist & Industry Analyst - Fri, 05/27/2022 - 16:33

Michoacan Governor Alfredo Ramírez said the state has the potential to further its social and economic development by fostering collaboration between the mining industry and state authorities in the production of lithium. He highlighted the presence of lithium deposits in Michoacan, although further study is still required. 


During an infrastructure event organized by the state’s Congress, Ramírez highlighted the presence of proven lithium deposits in the state, especially in the basin of the Cuitzeo Lake, which the government considers a critical opportunity toward development. The governor mentioned the recently approved Mining Law reform, which he considers to be the most relevant regulatory event in Mexico’s recent history. 


In April 2022, Ramírez reported that the Mexican Geological Survey (SGM) found lithium in the state and that he sent a group of researchers from the Universidad Michoacan University of Saint Nicholas of Hidalgo (UMSNH) to collect more information. 


He stressed the need to develop infrastructure that transforms the social reality of the communities where mining projects are to be developed with a focus on sustainable and responsible practices. 


According to Ramírez, Michoacan has 116 operating mining units, of which 101 create over 12,000 jobs. In addition, the mining industry contributes more than US$1.6 billion to the state’s GDP. For this reason, he considers the mining sector as key to the development of the state, so collaboration between authorities and the private sector to progress it further is essential.


Ramírez highlighted the joint work between state authorities, ArcelorMittal and Kansas City Southern to implement the use of eco gravel, a byproduct obtained from metal smelting, for road repair works. “The use of eco gravel promotes the principles of circular economy. It also adds value to the recycling of byproducts created during industrial activity, contributing to the environment by avoiding the use of further natural resources,” said victor Cairo, Representative, ArcelorMittal.


Lithium has become a critical mineral in the energy transition, mainly used in the manufacturing of energy batteries. Michoacan is among the 18 states with possible lithium deposits, though it has not explored this potential further yet. “There are reports of possible deposits in Tierra Caliente and Cuitzeo Lake. We need to carry out studies for exploration and possible future exploitation… I cannot say if there is lithium in Michoacan for sure,” said Ramiro Escudero, Researcher, UMSNH in an interview with Quadratin.

Photo by:   Jonny Caspari

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