Tesla’s New Texas Factory in 2022 Would Be First for North America
The owner of Tesla says it's a 'license to print money', and he is working on approval to start the printing process.
Tesla is reportedly bringing a historic factory to Texas - the first of its kind in North America - and construction could begin by the end of this year.
New Tesla Factory in Texas
If regulatory clearance goes as planned, the new facility will be located in Nueces County, Texas, near the Gulf of Mexico, according to Energy and Capital. As early as the fourth quarter of 2022, Tesla could begin construction of a battery-grade lithium hydroxide refinery.
What is Lithium?
According to Live Science, lithium is a mood-altering drug as well as the lightest known metal. Lithium is an element used in drugs, aircraft, and batteries. Lithium carbonate is a common treatment of bipolar disorder. Lithium-ion batteries are used as rechargeable power for laptops, phones and other digital devices.
Why Does Tesla Want Lithium?
Tesla has been considering lithium mining and refining industry for a long time. Electrek.com reports that in 2014, Tesla tried and failed to buy a lithium startup for $325 million.
Right now, the United States has one lithium mine located in Nevada, as reported by the United States Geological Survey. Currently, over 75% of all battery-grade lithium hydroxide worldwide is produced in China-owned facilities located in Chile.
The new refinery is slated to enter commercialization by the end of 2024, and at that time, Tesla will control the only local supply in North America.