Supply chain concerns will drive EV battery recycling policies
With electric vehicles starting to gain traction, the International Energy Agency’s updated, ten-year e-mobility forecast has suggested geopolitical and economic concerns will trump environmental niceties when it comes to encouraging recycling. But what price ever-cheaper batteries?
When it comes to the reclamation of battery materials such as cobalt, a desire to escape the tyranny of a small number of strategic supply chains is likely to be the chief motivation for governments to ramp up recycling efforts, rather than loftier, environmentally-focused concerns.
That pragmatic verdict was among the findings of a wide-ranging, updated ten-year forecast of the electric vehicle (EV) market produced by the International Energy Agency (IEA) this week.
Using a business-as-usual and a more ambitious scenario in its Global EV Outlook 2020 report, the IEA predicted the 65 kilotons (kt) of nickel, 22kt of manganese, 19kt of cobalt and 17kt of lithium used by the global EV industry last year could mushroom to 925kt, 177kt, 180kt and 185kt, respectively, in ten years’ time, under its ‘stated policies’ model. A Paris Agreement-friendly ‘sustainable development’ future could see those 2030 volumes more than double, according to the report.
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