Veolia, one of the world's largest waste management companies and the largest in the UK, will open a new facility in Minworth, West Midlands for discharging and dismantling of EV battery packs. The company says the opening marks the first step in developing its recycling technology and treatment capacity within the UK.
According to the announcement the operation will initially discharge and dismantle batteries before the mechanical and chemical separation recycling processes will be completed and further "utilise its global network to establish a full circular economy solution in the next five years to produce battery precursors in Europe".
Veolia today operates two recycling plants in Europe; Eurodiuze in France and BATREC in Swtizerland. While the latter is mostly focused on the mixed streams of batteries from Switzerland and the treatment of mercury batteries from the whole of Europe, Eurodieuze has been dismantling and processing EV batteries for many years. In March 2021 Veolia announced a consortium between its Eurodieuze operation, the material recovery specialist Solvay and the car maker Renault with the aim to develop a full process for recycling of lithium-ion batteries generating battery grade materials. Most likely this is where the dismantled batteries in the UK will go.
The activities in battery recycling in the UK has been high the latest years with several smaller new establishments and openings including a pre-processing line at Bruce Metals in Sheffield, a shredding line for dry battery production scrap at ReCoNi in Kent and Recyclus in West Midlands. Veolia previously owned 50% of the battery collection program Batteryback but sold its share in 2016 to its partner Waste Care.
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