The impact of 'China's lithium capital' on Tibetan livelihoods

Jan 04, 2017
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Tibetans in China's Sichuan provinces are seeing and feeling the impact of a large lithium mine on their environment. The land they worship is threatened and the river their animals drink from is poisoned.

The impact of 'China's lithium capital' on Tibetan livelihoods

Lithium is an important material for many of today's batteries. Photo: bitslammer, Flickr (Creative Commons)

Tibetans in China's Sichuan provinces are seeing and feeling the impact of a large lithium mine on their environment. The land they worship is threatened and the river their animals drink from is poisoned. 

The Washington Post reported this story, which describes similar issues to those identified in an earlier article about lithium mining in Chile and Argentina. In both cases, there are major concerns about the local water supply. Both communities are also worried about the spirits that live on the land, not wanting to destroy their sacred habitat.

While China says that the region is benefitting from improved infrastructure and opportunities for inhabitants, a report from Tibet Watch argued that most infrastructure projects are aimed at extracting minerals, while the interest of residents is given a lower priority. Most projects do not employ Tibetans in great numbers; workers from other regions are brought in to do the jobs.

Read the full article here.

Website: https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/tibetans-in-anguish-as-chinese-mines-pollute-their-sacred-grasslands/2016/12/25/bb6aad06-63bc-11e6-b4d8-33e931b5a26d_story.html

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