May 17, 2022 16:30
The whole globe is today embroiled in an energy transition that entails, among other things, total electrification of the transportation sector and the development of renewable energies. As a consequence, the demand for batteries has increased consistently by 30 percent annually in recent years, and the prediction for the next few years is exponential.
However, this expansion in the manufacturing and usage of batteries for electric automobiles needs the establishment of a new and more vital sector: the recycling of these batteries. Above all, considering that the energy transition to be faced in the future is related to the circular economy, which is crucial for the desired movement towards sustainability.
Recyclers of discarded batteries believe they can adopt methods today to extract and return the minerals like lithium, cobalt, and nickel that are required for manufacture into the supply chain. And it's evident the sector is primed for growth: from April to September of this year, the anticipated number of total lithium-ion batteries that would be accessible for recycling in North America by 2025 rose by 65 percent, according to Benchmark Mineral Intelligence.
Li-Cycle, a business that recycles batteries, estimates that 460,000 tons of lithium-ion batteries reach their end of life each year. Li-Cycle anticipates that by 2020, 1,7 million tons of batteries will have reached their end of life. As electric vehicle manufacturers increase manufacturing, this quantity will increase to 15 million tons by 2030.
However, despite the surplus of worthless batteries, the need for battery metals is increasing. BloombergNEF anticipates that the demand for "green metals" will be almost sixfold by 2030. In reality, there is currently a dearth of battery metals such as lithium. And 5 to 10 percent of lithium-ion battery volumes are lost or rejected by manufacturers as junk.
Sadly, only a minority of lithium-ion batteries are recycled. According to some estimates, fewer than 5 percent of wasted batteries are recycled. Most of them wind up in landfills, where they might contaminate soil or water, despite having recyclable metals.
To be sustainable, we must repurpose existing resources. Lithium-ion batteries, which include "green metals" that are difficult to get and costly, such as cobalt and nickel, are the best candidates for recycling. Recycling will increase the availability of battery metals and lessen dependency on nations such as the Democratic Republic of the Congo (D.R.C.).
The mining of cobalt, nickel, and lithium in locations such as the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Indonesia, and Chile has prompted environmental and ethical problems. Some D.R.C. mines purportedly use underage labor, for example. China is the largest producer and refiner of graphite. The United States, the second-largest market for electric vehicles, generates just 1 percent of the world's battery materials and relies on other nations for supplies.
However, the recycling of hazardous lithium-ion batteries requires caution. The majority of batteries are recycled by smelting, which exposes them to high temperatures and produces harmful gasses. Traditional recycling can only recover fifty percent of the material, and the smelting process is very energy-intensive. However, a number of firms are creating safer solutions that can recover more battery metals.
In recent years, the renewable energy industry has gained significant momentum, fuelled by governmental support and net-zero emission objectives from a number of countries throughout the globe. The International Energy Agency (IEA) has said that the renewable energy industry is one of the fastest-growing industries, with a record-breaking 290 GW of new generating capacity deployed globally this year.
In addition, the IEA forecasts that promises made by global leaders will accelerate the rise of renewable energy over the next five years. Governments have authorized investing $480 billion in sustainable energy and $45 billion in renewables by October 2021. In addition, the worldwide lithium-ion recycling battery market is anticipated to increase by $1.11 billion between 2021 and 2025, at a CAGR of 17.8 percent.
The methodologies employed by battery recycling firms to extract value from wasted cells, the feedstocks they utilize, and the mechanics of the process differ widely. Redwood Materials, managed by Tesla co-founder J.B. Straubel, is promoting itself as an e-waste recycler with a larger scope. Battery Resourcers are among companies using more complex procedures to make cathodes and other high-value materials. Aqua Metals uses a revolutionary water-based technology to extract metals such as lithium, nickel, and cobalt, while others use heat.
Li-Cycle is a young firm created in 2016 to capitalize on the demand for recycled battery materials. Li-Cycle is ideally positioned to profit from the change to electrification and demand for battery materials since their lithium-ion battery recycling solution offers a market for discarded batteries and a sustainable supply of materials for use in recycled batteries.
Li-Cycle anticipates that the industry will create over 15 million tons of abandoned lithium-ion batteries by the year 2030 and is positioning itself to oversee the collection and processing of this trash in order to recover the usable materials. According to the business, up to 95% of battery materials may be recovered, hence lowering the quantity of garbage sent to landfills.
Li-Cycle announced earlier this month that it would establish a new battery recovery plant in Alabama, significantly expanding the company's presence. The Alabama plant, which will be situated in Tuscaloosa and scheduled to open in the middle of 2022, will have an initial capacity of 5,000 metric tons of battery production scrap, with the option to increase that capacity in the future.
This firm is new to the public markets, having gone public through a SPAC transaction on August 11. This merger with Peridot Acquisition Corporation contained $580 million in fresh money for Li-Cycle, which is being utilized to finance the growth of the company's facilities.
Since becoming public, Li-Cycle has also issued its first quarterly report as a publicly-traded company for the fiscal third quarter of 2021, which concluded on July 31. LICY recorded sales of $1.7 million for its fiscal third quarter, increasing 840 percent year-over-year. The extent of the profit reflects the fact that the firm began operations in materials recycling this past year.
Daniel Ives, a 5-star analyst at Wedbush, views Li-Cycle as a "green E.V. recycling pure-play" and gives the stock a Buy with a $14 price objective. This aim implies a 37% increase over the next year at present levels. (To see Ives' discography, go here)
Ives argues in support of this position, "The E.V. revolution is in its infancy, and as more and more E.V.s hit the road over the next decade, firms will look to Li-Cycle, the market's only pure-play lithium-ion recycler, as the source for battery-grade materials. So long as the demand for lithium, nickel, and cobalt continues to climb, Li-Cycle will be able to meet the expanding demands of its customers. We anticipate the lithium-ion recycler's gross margins to treble by 2025.
Overall, Wall Street seems to concur with Wedbush's assessment. There are six analyst reports on file for Li-Cycle, with five recommending a Buy and one recommending a Hold. The stock is now priced at $10.20, and its average price target of $13.83 indicates a potential upside of 36 percent over the next 12 months.
Umicore is far less speculative than Li-Cycle, although it is not a pure-play lithium-ion recycling company. The Belgian firm is a recycling and materials technology conglomerate. They make almost fifty percent of their income from recycling, but they also have substantial operations in pollution control catalysts for automobiles and electric vehicle battery materials. In addition, recycling lithium-ion batteries represent a small portion of the recycling market. They also process and recycle jewelry, industrial metals, and precious metals.
Umicore is substantial (revenues of €3.9 billion in 2021), profitable (EBITDA of €1.25 billion), and pays dividends. However, this is not the ideal approach to gambling on E.V. Battery recycling.
Battery Solutions is a leading E.V. battery recycling business in North America due to its sustainable management and end-of-life battery solutions. This business has more than 25 years of expertise and a clear, tried-and-true procedure inside the industry.
The same holds true for adding to the circular economy model, and this organization prioritizes living quality while seeking economic growth. Assuredly, Battery Solutions returns recycled E.V. battery materials to the production and marketing sectors.
Thus, the globe is experiencing less environment, and you may participate in making it more environmentally friendly. Due to their adherence to high environmental standards and regulatory compliance, this firm is the ideal candidate for recycling used E.V. batteries.
Nevada-based ABML recovers and recycles lithium and other battery metals. Ryan Melsert, its C.E.O. and C.T.O. is a former Tesla Gigafactory engineer. The technique of ABML prevents high-temperature processing, and this guarantees that over 90 percent of battery materials are recovered without producing any harmful waste.
In Nevada, ABML is constructing a prototype non-thermal battery recycling facility. The mill should handle 20,000 tons yearly, and ABML estimates that it will begin producing income in the second quarter of 2022. ABML anticipates an annual capacity of 120,000 tons in 2024 and 220,000 tons in 2025. ABML is a small-cap stock with no revenues to date.
Battery metals are explored, mined, extracted, and recycled by ABML.
It has also developed a platform for clean technology that boosts the supply of primary metals used in the batteries of electric vehicles, consumer electronics, and power equipment.
ABML's net cash supplied by financing operations for the three months ended September 30 rose 2,584.9 percent year-over-year to $41.25 million. The company's cash balance increased by 3,452.2 percent year over year to $45.91 million. On November 11, 2021, the firm announced building progress and receipt of a Core and Shell Building permit for its pre-commercial battery factory in Fernley, Nevada. This is anticipated to open the way for the development of industrial facilities, labs, and office spaces. Consequently, the facility should ultimately generate a large income for the corporation. ABML reported on December 10, 2021, that it has secured permit approval and reclamation bonds from the B.L.M. Nevada State Office in Reno for Phase One subsurface sampling of its 305 lode mining claims in Little Smoke Valley, Nevada. With the permission and bond in place, it is anticipated that exploratory drilling will resume shortly.
The market anticipates a 25% growth in ABML's EPS year-over-year in the current year (fiscal 2022). The price of the stock has increased by 114.7 percent over the last year to $1.02 as of yesterday's closing of the trade, and it has increased by 1% during the previous five days.
The ReCell Center of the U.S. Department of Energy is a partnership between academics, industry, and national labs striving to develop lithium-ion recycling processes.
The objective is to make battery recycling viable by recovering high-value materials and creating systems that maximize yield, productivity, and cost.
The ReCell Center also expects that using scientific methodologies to generate economically viable lithium-battery recycling would minimize waste, create employment, and lessen the United States' dependency on imported raw materials.
ACCUREC Recycling GmbH, American Manganese Inc. is a well-known company that recycles several battery types, including lithium-ion and nickel-cadmium batteries. Consequently, this company is one of the most prominent solutions for recycling E.V. batteries.
This firm, which Reiner Sojka founded in 1996, started recycling batteries and established its first plant in Mülheim that handles the recycling of nickel-cadmium batteries. In 2015, however, the company began building a new plant in North Rhine-Westphalia for the recycling of lithium batteries.
So, when the battery in your electric car approaches its "end of life," you can depend on this organization to assist with recycling and optimizing the battery's components and recycling the battery itself.
Observe that this company's operations are transparent and very efficient. ACCUREC Recycling GmbH complies with rules and is accredited for battery recycling in its entirety.
Proper waste management is vital to safeguard the environment and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The process of curing involves combining used main batteries with concrete components. The system consumes little energy, emits almost no carbon dioxide, and removes hazardous fluorine compounds. By using waste batteries, curing procedures increase the quality of concrete and lessen the pollution they would otherwise cause due to concrete features. This strategy is also readily scalable.
The Finnish firm AkkuSer recycles lead in a clean, secure, local, and sustainable manner by using curing treatment technology. Their recycling technology permits the safe handling of reactive battery waste and high recycling effectiveness, with over fifty percent of battery materials recovered. The batteries are then separated into fractions depending on their metal and chemical composition to maximize the recovery of precious battery metals.
SNAM is one of the leading firms highlighted in the E.V. battery recycling industry, with several initiatives aimed at minimizing the environmental effects of heavy metals and CO2 emissions. The French business specializes in recycling Nickel-Metal-Hydride, Nickel-Cadmium, and Lithium-ion.
Thus, their services may assist with the disposal of obsolete E.V. batteries, relieving vehicle owners of the burden of finding a solution. In 1977, SNAM was founded in Lyon, and in 1981, its St-Quentin-Fallavier plant was permitted to process 800 tons of cadmium waste.
In 2000, the first treatment of lithium-ion wastes began. This firm adopts the ISO 14001 standard for establishing its environmental management system, which may be of interest to you.
G & P Service Contractors Inc. is one of the leading professionals in waste batteries in the United Kingdom. You should be aware that this company provides extensive recycling of several battery batteries and has superior reuse alternatives for E.V. batteries.
The firm was founded in 1965 as an experienced provider of electrical commercial and residential freezers, refrigeration equipment, and air conditioning components. This business will perform an excellent job if you want timely, cost-effective, dependable, and compliant recycling of your E.V. batteries.
Their performance with battery chemistries such as lead-acid, nickel-metal hydride, zinc-carbon, silver oxide, nickel-cadmium, and even lithium-ion is exceptional. The good news is that G & P also provides experienced guidance on shipping, managing, storing, and recycling these batteries.
Aceleron, a clean technology business located in the United Kingdom, employs revolutionary technologies to produce what it says are the most sustainable lithium battery packs in the world.
Carlton Cummings, co-founder, and chief technology officer of Aceleron, told The Telegraph that the difficulty in recycling many batteries is due to the fact that many of them were not created with the next phase of their life in mind.
According to Cummings, making batteries that are simpler to dismantle would promote reuse and foster a circular ecology. Batteries might be reused to aid in the storage of power at E.V. charging stations, creating extra storage capacity.
The France-based enterprise is a worldwide recycling company founded in 1993 to market the efforts of Dr. Farouk Tedjar. However, Recupyl has developed a diverse portfolio within the battery recycling industry.
Please be advised that this firm creates a patent-protected hydrometallurgical technology for treating a variety of lithium batteries. This organization's processes often include the dissolution and extraction, purification, and modification of metals.
Recupyl has aggressively opened many battery recycling plants in the last few years, exceeding stringent regulatory criteria. Thus, these recycling facilities may be found in France, Singapore, Spain, and the United Kingdom.
Redwood Materials, Inc., formed in 2017, is one of the most well-known battery recycling firms in the United States. This company was conceived by J.B. Straubel, Tesla's former chief technology officer.
Redwood Materials promises to recycle lithium-ion batteries efficiently from its headquarters in Carson City, Nevada. Please be aware that this business also produces battery materials for electrical storage and electromobility.
This organization anticipates automobile industry changes and develops efficient methods for recycling E.V. batteries. Ford, a prominent automaker, inked a contract with this business to recycle E.V. batteries later this year (2021).
By now, you are aware that the wave of electric vehicle (E.V.) adoption is rather massive, as the majority of drivers want to reduce hazardous emissions. And electric vehicles operate on rechargeable batteries that emit less pollution. However, E.V. batteries are replaced when they approach the end of their service life.
The improper disposal of batteries, including lithium batteries, presents significant environmental risks. Therefore, you should be familiar with major lithium battery recycling firms that can assist you in recycling your lithium battery junk. This is where the article's purpose lies.