Chris Jones, CEO and president of Westwater. Chris Jones is going to help fuel lithium batteries with graphite.

Jones is CEO and president of Westwater, the Colorado-based company that recently announced its new venture, Alabama Graphite Products, in Coosa County. The facility will process and, eventually, mine graphite for lithium batteries.

That means an Alabama plant will be fueling cell phones, electric vehicles and just about anything else that requires a lithium battery.

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“One of our tag lines … is you might see a Tesla coming down the road at you; I see 800 lbs. of batteries and 200 lbs. of graphite,” he says. “Graphite is one of the several essential parts of the lithium ion battery.”

Virtually all of that graphite right now comes from China, but Westwater and its Alabama operation is going to change that.

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