CEO RAMBLINGS - March 21, 2019


A few days ago Benchmark Mineral Intelligence Managing Director Simon Moores was summoned to speak to a recent hearing to the US Senate.. it was the second testimony he has given in less than two years and the Senators were beginning to panic because they see the US as simply a bystander in the current global battery development race. The US is being left behind in what they claim is an energy storage revolution. The Senators claimed that this could easily be the biggest trend in the 21st century and they were worried that the US is just no "at the table".

Moores spoke about lithium-ion mega factories and how the global battery race has increased since Tesla's announcement of Giga-factory 1 in Nevada. "Since then, we've had 71 mega-factories announced and that 45 of those are in production now" he said. To have electric vehicles (EVs) there is a need for quality storage batteries and therefore a need for a dependable and guaranteed supply of both cobalt and graphite. The need for these minerals is real and it is huge today and will be so much greater in the future. From where, will these minerals come? Millions of tons will be required. There are no exclusive cobalt or graphite mines in the USA. None at all. Also, no producing cobalt mines in Canada and only one small graphite mine in western Canada and a large one in eastern Canada but unfortunately it will soon exhaust its graphite ore body.

The market for EVs is growing by the day worldwide and battery quality is also improving by the day. SK Innovations in South Korea is aiming to produce batteries that will enable EVs to travel 520 kilometers (325 miles) on a single quick charge. Most today are in the 400 kilometers range. While this market is exploding globally where are we in North America going to source our supplies of cobalt and graphite. As an aside, Glencore PLC estimates that the production of a typical EV will require more than eight kilograms of cobalt alone. In an effort to encourage the development of cobalt and graphite mining projects Moores predicts that auto companies and oil and gas firms will supply much of the capital needed. They can move quickly and it is imperative that capital is mobilized as fast as possible.

As the CEO of Atacama this makes me anxious to get started on exploring and hopefully developing our cobalt and graphite properties just as soon as the snow is off the land. Spring just arrived so those days of action on the ground ought not be far away. PS. AS a shareholder you are an owner and it is time to start supporting your own Corporation. Call me and I will tell you how.  I am excited and I am Glenn Grant, CEO of

Glenn Grant