Approval of Albemarle lithium plant to yield 1,000 jobs in WA

US-based lithium producer Albemarle Corp has received state environmental approval for its AUS$1 billion Kemerton lithium plant in Western Australia, which is set to create 500 construction jobs and another 500 permanent positions.

“I’m pleased to see this project progressing, following my positive discussions with Albemarle’s directors during my visit to Washington earlier this year,” said WA premier Mark McGowan.

“The state is a world-leading producer of lithium and WA has an abundant supply of lithium and other battery minerals, which is why it’s vital we maximise the opportunities this industry provides, both upstream and downstream, to Western Australians.”

Albemarle plans to develop the plant in the Kemerton Strategic Industrial Zone, from which it will process spodumene ore concentrate taken from the Talison Lithium Greenbushes mine, where the firm is partnered with China’s Tianqi Lithium.

When in operation, the plant will process the concentrate through five process trains to produce 100,000 tonnes of lithium hydroxide product.

The Kemerton facility is expected to be the largest lithium plant in WA once it has been constructed.