Focus

Portugal's lithium rush: How to reconcile jobs with the environment?

A lithium prospection site in Viseu District, Portugal.
A lithium prospection site in Viseu District, Portugal. © FRANCE 24
By: Sarah MORRIS | Anaïs GUÉRARD | Constance MEYER
5 min

Lithium, a vital component of batteries contained in mobile phones, computers and electric cars, is a prized metal. In Portugal, which sits on vast, untapped deposits, it's also a divisive topic. The Socialist government wants the country to become the number one European supplier of the metal, with plans to create thousands of jobs. But not all Portuguese are happy about this new mining business and its environmental impact. Our correspondents report.

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A programme prepared by Patrick Lovett and Rebecca Martin.

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