South Korea is planning to build a new battery recycling plant at Younggwang, South Jeolla Province.
Earthtech has invested US$20 million in the new recycling hub. The plant will recover lithium, nickel, cobalt and will conduct various research and business projects relating to e-mobility. Construction is already underway with the first phase probably due to complete in March next year.
Above all, the new plant will be state-of-the-art and use eco-friendly recycling methods. The facility will comprise of disassembling facilities, performance testing grounds for used batteries, and other facilities for various tests and examinations. The used batteries, depending on their condition and capacity, will be recycled as Energy Storage Systems.
Earthtech has the capacity to process 5000 electric vehicles and almost 2000 tonnes of used automotive batteries every year.
The Ministry of Environment reports that there are now 60,000 cars in operation in South Korea. In 2018 sales of new electric cars were 32,000 units. Globally South Korea is the fifth largest e-car market. Even more interesting is that market analysts are predicting sales of 100,000 electric cars in 2019.
Australian electric car sales
Sales of electric cars in Australia are at a low level compared with Europe and the rest of the world. Last year Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries reported registrations of 1352 new electric cars. In contrast, electric cars in Norway make up 50% of new car sales. In the US the figure is over 5%.’
Hence, the transition to electric mobility in Australia is a long way behind the rest of the world. Given Australians propensity to adopt new technology the increased sales of electric cars will be significant in the next 5 years.
Ecobatt, part of the Recycal group of companies, are building their first battery recycling plant at Campbellfield Victoria. Above all, Ecobatt have invested in state of the art equipment to ensure they can collect and recycle e-car batteries. Importantly they have purchased a mobile ‘hook on’ ‘hook off’ 20 foot container. Finally, the container has ramps and an electric winch system for added safety. Most noteworthy is its sophisticated fire suppression system which reduces the risk of fire after an accident.