Why battery recycling is an effective approach to adding value to the broader electric vehicles market. 

Growing demand of  Li-on batteries for electric cars such as the BMW i models, suggests that batteries affect the future of electric vehicles. Battery cost is at the heart of the current debate around EVs and is seen as a major barrier to their quicker adoption. But what about battery recycling? Let’s take a look at how it can add value to the broader EV market.

1- Batteries can be re-used for other purposes

Batteries are a powerful source of energy storage and finding ways to give them a second life  will increase their usefulness and commercial attractiveness. Used batteries can still be useful for re-use in secondary applications. These include static applications such as wind or solar  power storage. Also, with automakers like General Motors and Nissan looking to further explore electric vehicle batteries’ secondary uses I think we can be positive that there are potential applications we haven’t thought of yet.

2 – It can help to maximise residual value

As I’ve touched on recently, depreciation of EVs is linked to battery degradation. New battery management systems in electric vehicles can help to reduce battery degradation as they provide insightful information on the batteries history and performance. Knowing the capacities of batteries without expensive testing and sorting can maximise their residual and resale value.

3 – It’s an economic opportunity

While recycling of Lithium-ion cells used in laptops and cell phones has been around for a long time, recycling of EV batteries is still in its infancy. What does this mean for the industry? I was reading with interest an article discussing that this can be an economic opportunity for recycling firms. I then remembered Tesla announcing in 2008 that it had teamed up with the battery recycler Toxco for a recycle plan for its electric cars. This possibly suggests the opportunity that exists there and can incentivise more companies to engage with the EVs market.

4 – It’s an opportunity to increase recycling trends

We’re often asked about why electric vehicles are better than conventional ones and why all the fuss. There are many arguments relating to their benefits but to me, the most important is that they can help to improve the environment and this is difficult to ignore. Recycling of used EV batteries can provide ecological benefits as it can reduce resource wastage and increase environmental awareness. It’s worth bearing in mind that this can even support the uptake of EVs as it can positively influence public perception.

The points I’ve touched on today are examples of how I think battery recycling can play a big part in supporting the electric vehicles market. What’s your take on this? I’d like to hear if you agree or disagree.