Canada-based Li-Cycle Holdings Corp., the leading lithium-ion battery recycler in North America, plans to build a recycling facility near the Mercedes-Benz assembly plant in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. The project is expected to create 30 jobs.
The location will become Li-Cycle’s fourth lithium-ion battery recycling facility, or Spoke, in North America. The company plans to begin operations by mid-2022.
“With the popularity of electric vehicles accelerating, it’s critical that old batteries are recycled, and Li-Cycle’s technologies make that possible,” Governor Kay Ivey said. “Li-Cycle’s selection of Tuscaloosa for its network of recycling facilities means not only jobs in Alabama, but also a positive for the environment.”
According to Alabama Department of Commerce, Li-Cycle said the Southeastern U.S. is emerging as a critical region for the lithium-ion battery supply chain, as battery manufacturers and automotive OEMs establish operations in the region, which will lead to the generation of significant quantities of battery manufacturing scrap and end-of-life batteries available for recycling.
“Our new facility in Alabama positions us well to meet the growing demand for lithium-ion battery recycling,” said Tim Johnston, co-founder and executive chairman of Li-Cycle. “This facility is essential in filling a recycling gap in the southeastern United States. This project addresses the battery repurposing proposition that must also be a part of the sustainability solution that EVs offer,” he added.
When completed, Li-Cycle’s Spoke 4 facility will have an initial capacity of up to 5,000 tons of battery manufacturing scrap and end-of-life batteries per year, bringing Li-Cycle’s total North American recycling capacity to 25,000 tons per year. The site is also being developed to accommodate a future, second 5,000-ton processing line, which would increase capacity to 10,000 tons per year, and Li-Cycle’s total North American recycling capacity to 30,000 tons per year.
“With EV production set to start in Alabama in 2022, Li-Cycle’s Tuscaloosa recycling facility will ensure that Alabama plays another important role in the lifecycle of the batteries powering electric vehicles,” said Greg Canfield, Secretary of the Alabama Department of Commerce.“This project addresses the battery repurposing proposition that must also be a part of the sustainability solution that EVs offer.”
Univar Solutions Inc. will be an anchor battery feed supply customer for the new Alabama facility. The companies previously announced on-site partnership for Univar to provide waste management solutions for electric vehicle and lithium-ion battery manufacturing.
Danielle Winningham, executive director for Tuscaloosa County Economic Development Authority added, “with a strategic focus on mobility and power, West Alabama is a prime location for Li-Cycle’s Spoke facility.”