Why the Ioneer (ASX:INR) share price is on the rise today

Lithium demand is forecast to remain strong as global electric vehicle production looks set to surge.

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The Ioneer Ltd (ASX: INR) share price is moving higher in morning trade, up 2%.

Below we take a look at the latest announcement from the ASX lithium share.

What did Ioneer announce?

Ioneer’s share price is gaining after the company reported it had secured a Water Pollution Control Permit for its Rhyolite Ridge Lithium-Boron Project in the US state of Nevada.

Alongside the Class II Air Quality Permit Ioneer received for the project last month, it has now received both of the crucial permits needed to commence construction at Rhyolite Ridge.

On completion, the project will produce lithium carbonate and boric acid end products. Covering some 3.8 square kilometres, it will include a process plant, quarry, overburden storage facility, and a spent ore storage facility.

According to the release, evaporation ponds and tailings dams will not be incorporated due to its engineering design. As the project recycles its own water, Ioneer estimates it will use 30 times less water than the only other existing US domestic lithium production operation.

The company reported it has already acquired all the water it needs via agreements with local farmers. It said the impact on local water resources will be net-zero.

Commenting on the latest permit approval, Ioneer’s managing director Bernard Rowe said:

The grant of the Water Pollution Control and Air Quality Permits represents a significant milestone for the Rhyolite Ridge Lithium-Boron Project and further demonstrates that our unique lithium-boron ore allows for the production of end products with minimal environment impact, including surface footprint, air quality and water conservation…

[W]e are pleased that Rhyolite Ridge is the first developmental lithium project in Nevada to receive both Water Pollution Control and a Class II Air Quality permits. As the most advanced lithium development project in the US, we are committed to ensuring Rhyolite Ridge is a sustainable, environmentally sensitive operation that also delivers significant positive economic impact in the state of Nevada.

Rowe said that with both permits secured, Ioneer can continue its work toward construction of the project.

Ioneer share price snapshot

Ioneer’s share price has been a strong performer over the past 12 months, up 246%. By comparison the All Ordinaries Index (ASX: XAO) is up 25% in the same period.

Year-to-date, the Ioneer share price has continued to outperform, up 48% so far in 2021.

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