In early November ARA was invited to participate and provide a keynote presentation at the Argonne National Laboratory symposium on hybrid and lithium-ion batteries. The two-day event, entitled the ReCell Center Industry Collaboration Meeting, included over one hundred participants from science, academia, automakers, suppliers, government, ISRI and other stakeholders. Marty Hollingshead, ARA’s Second Vice President/Treasurer and Delanne Bernier, Vice President of Government Relations, were asked to present the opening keynote address on how electric vehicle batteries will impact automotive recyclers, how these batteries are handled during dismantling and the impact on the end-of-life system.
Marty and Delanne presented a power point discussing the challenges recyclers face including safety, training, education, environmental, storage, disposition, transportation, cost recovery and consistency of manufacturer involvement. The reception to ARA’s presentation was overwhelmingly positive. Participants from each discipline reached out during breaks and lunch to further discuss the issues and challenges presented. Additional invitations to speak in related conferences were also extended. Extensive follow-up will occur with dozens of participants. Thanks go to Andy Latham of SalvageWire and Ginny Whelan for providing important information and data for the presentation.
While much of the conference focused on the chemistry behind lithium-ion batteries, the ReCell Center’s Director wanted the focus to be on how to promote recycling and reuse and make it profitable. Subjects discussed by other speakers and during break out sessions included the use and recovery of rare earth materials, chemical studies, projected annual battery demand, the national security aspects, improvements in battery pack designs, standards, and “design for recycling.”