The largest known Measured and Indicated (M&I) Resource in North America

Thacker Pass

Location Humboldt County in Northern Nevada, U.S.
Resource Sedimentary lithium
Product Battery-quality lithium carbonate
Operation Shallow open-pit mine and processing facility
Stage Commenced construction March 2023
Nominal production capacity Phase 1: 40,000 tonnes per annum (tpa) Phase 2: total capacity of 80,000 tpa
Life of mine At least 40 years
Offtake General Motors has exclusive rights to all of Phase 1 for 10 years, with an option to extend for an additional five years
Thacker Pass Map

The most significant opportunity to create a North American lithium battery supply chain for electric vehicles

Thacker Pass received a Record of Decision in January 2021 from the U.S. Department of the Interior Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and commenced construction in early March 2023.

Thacker Pass is situated at the southern end of the McDermitt Caldera, approximately 60 miles (100 km) northwest of Winnemucca, in Humboldt County, northern Nevada. The project has been relocated out of the Montana Mountains to avoid environmentally sensitive and rugged terrain.

We are committed to engaging with our broad range of stakeholders to responsibly develop Thacker Pass to become one of North America's largest sources of lithium chemicals to fuel the electric vehicle revolution.

Lithium Technical Development Center Virtual Tour

American Supply Chain and Reducing GHG Pollution

The United States Department of Defense has listed lithium as one of 35 critical minerals, because of U.S. overdependence on foreign countries for supply, and its importance to American security and economic prosperity. Production from Thacker Pass is anticipated to meet most of the projected demand for lithium in the United States and will significantly reduce the country's dependency on foreign suppliers.

America has an opportunity to flight climate change consistent with President Biden's goal of achieving net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by no later than 20501, by creating a domestic lithium supply chain that would reduce the country's overall GHG pollution. The world is increasingly relying on electric transportation to mitigate global warming, with demand for lithium forecasted to increase by over 200% by 2025 ‐ that's only three years away.

The manufacturing of batteries has a global footprint. Currently most of the world's lithium is mined in Australia or South America and only 1% is mined in the U.S. Lithium concentrate is then shipped mostly to China, to be processed into battery chemicals. These lithium chemicals are then often shipped to other parts of Asia, the U.S. or Europe to make into cathodes and install in battery packs. The batteries are then often shipped to another location for installation into their final product, such as electric vehicles. This current global supply chain uses a lot of energy.

Thacker Pass could enable a U.S. domestic supply chain that would allow domestic car manufacturers to produce electric vehicles from battery materials completely sourced and manufactured in the U.S., bringing down the overall carbon footprint, transport costs and supply chain risks. Production from Thacker Pass is expected to enable the production of up to one million electric vehicles per year.

In 2020, Lithium Americas joined a coalition of 30 companies to launch the Zero Emission Transportation Association (ZETA (opens in new window)), an organization dedicated to achieving 100% electric vehicle sales in the US by 2030. ZETA's objective is to secure American global EV manufacturing leadership, dramatically improve public health and significantly reduce carbon pollution.

Hummer truck Couple in Hummer truck

Resource and Reserve

See the Company’s NI 43-101 technical report dated effective November 2, 2022, “Feasibility Study National Instrument 43-101 Technical Report for the Thacker Pass Project, Humboldt County, Nevada, USA” for full details.

Mineral Reserve Estimate

As of November 2, 2022

Category Tonnage
(Mt)
Average
Li (ppm)
Lithium Carbonate Equivalent
(Mt)
Proven 192.9 3,180 3.3
Probable 24.4 3,010 0.4
Total Proven and Probable 217.3 3,160 3.7

Mineral Reserve Notes

  1. Mineral Reserves have been converted from measured and indicated Mineral Resources within the feasibility study and have demonstrated economic viability.
  2. Reserves presented at an 85% maximum ash content and a cut-off grade of 1.533 kg of lithium extracted per tonne run of mine feed. A sales price of $5,400 US$/t of Li2CO3 was utilized in the pit optimization resulting in the generation of the reserve pit shell in 2019. Overall slope of 27 degrees was applied. For bedrock material pit slope was set at 47 degrees. Mining and processing cost of $57.80 per tonne of ROM feed, a processing recovery factor of 84%, and royalty cost of 1.75% were addition inputs into the pit optimization.
  3. A LOM plan was developed based on equipment selection, equipment rates, labor rates, and plant feed and reagent parameters. All Mineral Reserves are within the LOM plan. The LOM plan is the basis for the economic assessment within this Technical Report, which is used to show economic viability of the Mineral Reserves.
  4. Applied density for the ore is 1.79 t/m3.
  5. Lithium Carbonate Equivalent is based on Vulcan Model LCE Tons with 95% recovery factor.
  6. Tonnages and grades have been rounded to accuracy levels deemed appropriate by the QP. Summation errors due to rounding may exist.
  7. The reference point at which the Mineral Reserves are defined is at the point where the ore is delivered to the run-of-mine feeder.

Mineral Resource Estimate

As of November 2, 2022

Category Tonnage
(Mt)
Average
Li (ppm)
Lithium Carbonate Equivalent
(Mt)
Measured 534.7 2,450 7.0
Indicated 922.5 1,850 9.1
Total Measured & Indicated 1,457.2 2,070 16.1
Inferred 297.2 1,870 3.0

Mineral Resource Notes

  1. The qualified person who supervised the preparation of and approved disclosure for the estimate is Benson Chow, P.G., SME-RM.
  2. Mineral resources that are not mineral reserves do not have demonstrated economic viability. Mineral resources are inclusive of 217.3 million metric tonnes (Mt) of mineral reserves.
  3. Mineral resources are reported using an economic break-even formula: “Operating Cost per Resource Tonne”/“Price per Recovered Tonne Lithium” * 10^6 = ppm Li Cutoff. “Operating Cost per Resource Tonne” = US$88.50, “Price per Recovered Tonne Lithium” is estimated: (“Lithium Carbonate Equivalent (LCE) Price” * 5.323 *(1 – “Royalties”) * “Recovery”. Variables are “LCE Price” = US$22,000/tonne Li2CO3, “Royalties” = 1.75% and “Recovery” = 73.5%.
  4. Presented at a cutoff grade of 1,047 ppm Li.
  5. A resource constraining pit shell has been derived from performing a pit optimization estimation using Vulcan software.
  6. The conversion factor for lithium to LCE is 5.323.
  7. Applied density for the mineralization is 1.79 t/m3.
  8. Measured mineral resources are in blocks estimated using at least six drill holes and eighteen samples within a 262 m search radius in the horizontal plane and 5 m in the vertical direction; indicated mineral resources are in blocks estimated using at least two drill holes and six to eighteen samples within a 483 m search radius in the horizontal plane and 5 m in the vertical direction; and inferred mineral resources are blocks estimated with at least two drill holes and three to six samples within a search radius of 722 m in the horizontal plane and 5 m in the vertical plane.
  9. Tonnages and grades have been rounded to accuracy levels deemed appropriate by the qualified person. Summation errors due to rounding may exist.