Kemerton lithium plant approved in WA

battery boom

Albemarle Corporation’s Kemerton lithium plant has received approval from WA’s McGowan Labor Government.

The Albemarle plant will be located in the Kemerton Strategic Industrial Area, 17 kilometres north east of Bunbury. The project has received its Ministerial Statement from the State Government.

When in operation, the Albemarle Kemerton Plant will process spodumene ore concentrate, through five process trains, to produce up to 100,000 tonnes of lithium hydroxide product. Spodumene ore will be sourced from the Talison Lithium’s Greenbushes mine, which in March 2018 announced an expansion to supply the rapidly expanding global market.

Related article: WA to become ‘lithium valley’

Once constructed, the Albemarle Kemerton Plant will be the second, and largest, lithium hydroxide manufacturing plant to invest in Western Australia in two years.

Earlier this year, the McGowan Government established a Lithium and Energy Materials Industry Taskforce to capitalise on WA’s unique resources and growth in the lithium-ion battery sector.

Premier Mark McGowan said WA is a world-leading producer of lithium and the state has an abundant supply of lithium and other battery minerals.

Related article: New battery to reduce outages in Mallacoota

“… It’s vital we maximise the opportunities this industry provides, both upstream and downstream, to Western Australians,” he said.

The Albemarle Kemerton Plant will create more than 500 construction jobs with an initial 100 operational jobs, increasing to up to 500 at full operational capacity.

Environment Minister Stephen Dawson said the Albemarle lithium plant has undergone a thorough environmental assessment process by the Environment Protection Authority, which recommended the project could proceed subject to strict environmental conditions.