'We don't eat batteries': the impact of lithium mining on Chile and Argentina's AtacamasPhoto: Andean salt flats. Photo: Pablo Necochea, Flickr (Creative Commons)

Communities of the Salinas Grandes basin and Laguna Guayatayoc, in Argentina, are protesting against mining companies which are developing lithium mining operations on indigenous land.

'We don't eat batteries': the impact of lithium mining on Chile and Argentina's AtacamasPhoto: Andean salt flats. Photo: Pablo Necochea, Flickr (Creative Commons)

The target companies (Losi and Ekeko) are part of a mining project seeking to exploit lithium deposits in the region, a mineral currently in high demand due to the growth of battery technology. However, this rise in deamnd has also been connected to a range of social and environmental problems, particularly in the lithium-rich area of Bolivia, Chile and Argentina known as the ‘lithium triange’.

Communities in the area have denounced mining activities, stating a violation of their rights enshrined in the Argentinian Constitution, Convention 169 of the International Labor Organization (ILO), and the Declaration of the United Nations on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

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