However, the major geopolitical significance of lithium at present, pertains to its widespread use in batteries. Consumption of lithium increased by 4–5% per year between 2002 and 2005. The Wikipedia entry suggests that "Continued expansion in the portable electronic products market and commercialisation of hybrid electric vehicles using lithium batteries suggest growth of up to 10% per year in lithium carbonate consumption in this market through 2010...China may emerge as a significant producer of brine-based lithium carbonate towards the end of this decade. Potential capacity of up to 45,000 tonnes per year could come on-stream if projects in Qinghai province and Tibet proceed." So, whilst China continues to burn hydrocarbons, it will also be able to sell lithium to the environmentally-penitent, hybrid-vehicled West.
None of which was in Amy Lee's mind when she wrote 'Lithium':
The first Evanescence album, 'Fallen' (2003), was a brilliant gothic, post Nu-metal, post-Radiohead record. The band, however, were basically built around Amy Lee and Ben Moody, and Ben left the band "due to creative differences". Their second album, 'The Open Door' (2006) was a huge disappointment, and I'd be surprised if Evanescence do anything but fulfill their name, and fade away. Amy Lee, however, has a superb voice, and 'Lithium' is a great song, so perhaps Amy has a future.