Lithium Australia is investing in the logistical infrastructure necessary to recycle LIBs through a partnership with Envirostream Australia, which supports recycling nationwide and will apply its collection know-how to other jurisdictions in due course.
Lithium Australia (ASX: LIT) and Envirostream Australia will combine their recycling resources as part of a strategy to become Australia’s only listed lithium-ion battery recycling entity – with the restructured business unit scheduled to begin trading on the ASX mid-next year (2020).
The increased exposure to battery recycling is part of Lithium Australia’s push to create a seamlessly integrated lithium mining, processing, battery manufacturing and recycling business using non-conventional feed sources such as lithium mica waste and spent batteries.
According to Lithium Australia, the integrated business units effectively close the loop in the energy metal cycle in order to provide industry with “ethical and sustainable” supply.
Leading battery industry supply specialist Lithium Australia’s (ASX: LIT) subsidiary Envirostream Australia Pty Ltd has signed a MoU with South Korean company SungEel HiTech Co. Ltd for the sale of recycled battery metals.
SungEel has agreed that Envirostream will have exclusivity of MMD supply from Australia, allowing the Australian firm to will increase its MMD shipments to SungEel, for refining into cobalt, nickel and lithium chemicals for the production of new Lithium Ion Batteries (LIBs).
Lithium Australia Managing Director, Adrian Griffin, said Envirostream is the only company in Australia with the integrated capacity to collect, sort, shred and separate all the components of spent LIBs, making it a perfect fit with Lithium Australia’s recycling expertise.
On 16 October 2019, Lithium Australia announced it had increased its equity in Envirostream to 24%, heralding the amalgamation of the two companies’ resources to create the only entity in Australia capable of creating new battery materials from spent LIBs.
The funds Lithium Australia has injected into Envirostream are being used to expand the latter’s Melbourne battery recycling facilities.
SungEel, which recovers critical energy metals from LIB scrap, has become South Korea’s (and one of the world’s) largest battery recyclers. A leader in the development of environmentally sustainable technologies, SungEel’s research and development programmes are ongoing. SungEel’s work is vital to the implementation of a circular battery economy not just within Australia but also internationally.
“Lithium Australia is working with Envirostream to roll out the latter’s Australia-wide collection network and expand its shredding and separation capacities as rapidly as possible,” Mr Griffin said.
“The MoU with SungEel provides for immediate refining of the MMD that Envirostream produces. It is expected that Envirostream’s next MMD shipment to SungEel will take place this month.
“Expanding Envirostream’s processing capacity to keep spent LIBs from landfill and export the energy metals they contain is an Australian imperative.
“Closing the loop on the production of battery materials reduces the environmental footprint of the mining and processing aspects inherent in LIB production, improves sustainability and prevents the components of spent LIBs from leaking into groundwater and oceans as a consequence of their relegation to landfill or transport to other jurisdictions.
“Together, Lithium Australia, Envirostream and SungEel can provide an immediate and viable solution to the LIB disposal crisis in this country.”
Source: TechInvest Online
South Korean battery giant LG Chem has signed a partnership agreement with Australian firm Envirostream for the expansion of local battery recycling facilities to progress its aim of achieving a “closed-loop” economy for its products.
Through the partnership, LG Chem hopes that Australian-based battery recycling facilities will help to boost Australia’s low rates of recovery of discarded battery materials, as well as eliminating the need for used batteries to be shipped to be shipped overseas for processing.
Li-Ion battery recycling is seen as a vital element of business growth in the OPE domain, as both manufacturers and end users are increasingly concerned about end-to-end product life. Envirostream recycles approximately 95 per cent of all waste material. “Our processing equipment mechanically and pneumatically extracts the copper, aluminium and steel, which are sold on national markets,” John explained.
Australia currently has one of the worst rates for battery recycling in the developed world, and with lithium-ion power equipment sales increasing, Australia is yet to rise to this waste challenge. John Polhill, National Development Manager at Envirostream, explains.
Is your business based in Victoria and you’re wondering how to deal with the new ban on batteries going to landfill? Envirostream is here to help and is paving the path for others to follow.