Battle lines redrawn as Argentina’s lithium mines ramp up to meet electric car demand


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In the vast white desert of the Salinas Grandes, Antonio Calpanchay, 45, lifts his axe and slices the ground. He has worked this land since he was 12, chopping and collecting salt, replenishing it for the seasons ahead and teaching his children to do the same. “All of our aboriginal community works here, even the elders,” he says, sheltering his weathered face from the sun. “We always have. It is our livelihood.” As his son watches on warily, Calpanchay points north, to a deviation from the plain’s blistering white – a heap of black stone and mud. “They started looking...