Dutch technology firm TES on July 11 said it had agreed a deal with Europe’s largest seaport, Rotterdam, for a 10,000m2 lithium battery recycling facility at the port.
There is already a waste licence in place which allows batteries to be stored at the site and forwarded on from there, as well as manage battery production scrap.
The plant, says TES, will be the first lithium battery recycling facility in the Netherlands, to add to its two other plants in Grenoble, France, and Singapore, the latter which was opened in March 2021.
Lithium battery recycling in Europe is far short of what will be needed to meet waste generation by 2030, according to a report from Circular Energy Storage released last December.
Yet the European Commission says the continent could account for 17% of the global demand for batteries by 2030.
TES claims it can recover 9kg out of every 10kg of usable commodity material in its hydrometallurgical recycling process, which separates copper and aluminium from the ‘black mass’ that forms the rest of the material produced.
The black mass is then further refined in stages to produce graphite, cobalt hydroxide and lithium carbonate.
“Once up and running, we will have up to 10,000 tonnes of shredding capacity per year and a subsequent hydrometallurgical process which focuses on the recovery of nickel, cobalt and lithium as a precursor feedstock for the battery industry,” said Thomas Holberg, global vice president of battery operations with TES.
“Our mission is to close the loop on lithium battery production by encouraging re-use and improving the collection and recycling of the scarce metals and materials they contain.”
“It is important to take significant steps to establish circular production processes,” said Allard Castelein, CEO of the Port of Rotterdam. “This could very well become the largest European facility for recycling batteries from electric cars.”