Media Statement | 18 May 2021
Geo40’s global plans to recover low-carbon lithium at scale accelerated by investment of up to $7.5m by Pacific Channel
New Zealand’s leading sustainable, mineral-recovery company, Geo40 Limited has secured up to $7.5m in equity investment from New Zealand deep-tech specialist Venture Capital firm Pacific Channel to fast-track plans to develop its nascent lithium-from-geothermal-fluid recovery technology. The Company has plans to supply sustainably-sourced, ultra-low-carbon lithium to the electric vehicle battery market.
“Geo40 has successfully leveraged and expanded its silica-recovery technology to develop a ground-breaking method to economically recover lithium from geothermal fluids,” said John Worth, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Geo40.
“Pacific Channel’s investment now enables the Company to accelerate its pilot plant plans and demonstrate that its recently developed lithium recovery method is capable of economically extracting lithium from geothermal and other subsurface fluids in an environmentally sustainable manner.”
Pacific Channel Partner, Kieran Jina commented “The investment in Geo40 is significant for our Fund II which has $55m available to invest in New Zealand based, deep-tech companies with breakthrough technologies”. Mr Jina commented further, “The technology developed by Geo40 is truly innovative and will have meaningful environmental benefits. This is Pacific Channel’s largest investment to date, and we’re thrilled to be providing the Company with the capital required to accelerate its growth into the rapidly expanding lithium recovery and supply market.”
The global demand for lithium is forecast to increase significantly as governments mandate a move to electric vehicles and support efforts that reduce carbon emissions and promote sustainable development initiatives. According to BloombergNEF, demand for lithium-ion batteries is expected to surge tenfold by 2030*.
Geo40’s early work suggests that, not only can it recover lithium selectively from geothermal and other underground fluids, but it can also produce high-quality lithium concentrates suitable for subsequent refining to final lithium products suitable for the EV battery market. Mr Worth noted “The Company has worked successfully with a number of brines with varying lithium levels from around the world in its testing programme to date”.
“Geo40 is positioning itself to have a significant impact on the global move to a more environmentally sustainable future with its speciality silica products used in various nano-technology applications, lithium for the rapidly growing electric battery market, as well as other elements, such as caesium and boron, the R&D work for which has already begun,” said Mr Worth.
“Geo40 believes that it can offer credible, economically compelling and environmentally sustainable alternatives to current extraction processes”.