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Environmental fate & pathways

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The hydrolysis of carbonates is a well known chemical process. Hydrolysis of lithium carbonate produces basic solutions by generating lithium hydroxide and lithium hydrogen carbonate. The pH values can be calculated based on pKa values. The pH of a 0.02 mol solution is calculated to be 11.3. In water CO2 is the predominant species at a pH lower than 6.33, HCO3- (hydrogen carbonate ion) at a pH in the range of 6.35 - 10.33, and CO32- (carbonate ion) at a pH higher than 10.33. The carbonate will finally be incorporated into the inorganic and organic carbon cycle.