Renault, Veolia and Solvay partner to recycle EV battery metals

The circular economy approach will ensure metals can be reused as much as possible and drastically lower the environmental impact of production

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Car manufacturer Groupe Renault, resource management company Veolia and science-based company Solvay are joining forces to recycle end-of-life electric vehicle (EV) battery metals in a closed-loop.

Renault joins Veolia and Solvay’s already established relationship from September of last year to help the circular economy process.

The number of EVs on the road worldwide is predicted to grow from 10 million in 2020 to more than 100 million by 2030.

To meet these demands, the three partners aim to create a sustainable supply source for strategic battery metals, which include cobalt, nickel and lithium. They seek to achieve this by bringing together their various expertise at each stage of the value chain, from collecting the end-of-life EV batteries, to their dismantlement, metal extraction and readying them for their return to market.

The closed-loop approach will ensure metals can be reused as much as necessary for EV batteries and drastically lower the environmental impact of production.

The companies have begun a test phase in a demo plant in France and wish to implement the process on the market as soon as possible.

CEO of Renault, Luca de Meo, said: “Groupe Renault has a holistic approach to the battery life cycle. Repairing first-life batteries to extend their automotive lifespan, developing second-life applications for energy storage and setting up a system for collecting and recycling batteries.

“Today, we are proud to reinforce our commitment to battery recycling by joining forces with Veolia and Solvay. We aim at implementing innovative and low-carbon battery recycling solutions to pave the way to sustainable sourcing for strategic battery materials as electric mobility is growing.

“Together, we will leverage our strong presence on the entire EV value chain in Europe to take a competitive position in the battery materials market and generate value beyond our core business.”