Within a three foot bubble of space surrounding me are four electronic devices with lithium batteries inside them; laptop, rechargeable wireless mouse, iPad and an iPhone. If the future holds more smartphones, drones, tablets, electric cars and other devices we’re going to need a lot of batteries to power it all. Currently, the best, most economical battery tech available is lithium-ion. All that lithium has to come from somewhere. Bloomberg’s Ashlee Vance tracks down the source to Chile’s Atacama Desert. It’s a rough looking landscape and quite the operation, but despite what some internet memes might have you believe it’s still a whole lot cleaner than turning back to oil.