Li-Cycle to build their first lithium-ion battery recycling facility outside of North America
New joint venture with strategic partners in Norway, to process 10,000 tonnes of lithium-ion batteries yearly
Li-Cycle Holdings Corp. has formed a joint venture with ECO STOR AS and Morrow Batteries AS. Li-Cycle will be the majority owner of the joint venture, with ECO STOR and Morrow being minority owners and the venture's Nordic-headquartered strategic partners. Through this vehicle, Li-Cycle says it will construct a new commercial lithium-ion battery recycling facility in southern Norway.
Norway has long been a leader in electric vehicle (EV) adoption and, according to the Norwegian Automobile Federation, is on the path of phasing out sales of new internal combustion engine vehicles by April 2022. This would be three years ahead of the 2025 target proposed by the Norwegian government and could result in a significant, long-term supply of end-of-life batteries.
Li-Cycle expects it will be well-positioned to ultimately recycle and bring these end-of-life batteries back into the lithium-ion battery supply chain. Importantly, this is in addition to the sustainable domestic supply of manufacturing scrap expected to be generated in Norway as battery manufacturing capacity is increased by companies such as Morrow.
Once constructed, the Norwegian Spoke will be Li-Cycle's first recycling facility outside of North America and is expected to have the capacity to process up to 10,000 tonnes of lithium-ion batteries per year, including but not limited to battery manufacturing scrap, full EV packs, and energy storage systems. The facility is expected to be operational in early 2023. The initiative brings together complementary parts of a circular and sustainable value chain to the European market and brings Li-Cycle's total expected global recycling capacity (existing and under development) to 40,000 tonnes of lithium-ion battery input per year.
"This is a significant step for Li-Cycle, as we deploy our proven lithium-ion battery resource recovery solution to the European market and execute on our global growth strategy with key industry partners," said Ajay Kochhar, President, CEO and co-founder of Li-Cycle. "Norway's early leadership in EV adoption and ecosystem is a beacon for electrification globally, creating a robust market for both battery manufacturing scrap and end-of-life batteries domestically. Together with our new partners, we believe we are well positioned to capitalize on this meaningful opportunity."
Subject to the parties entering into mutually acceptable definitive services, off-take and related agreements, ECO STOR will provide the joint venture with end-of-life lithium-ion batteries, along with Morrow providing lithium-ion battery manufacturing scrap from its planned battery manufacturing facilities in Norway. Li-Cycle will provide equipment, technology, technical services, and operational management for the Spoke facility, while having the right to acquire 100% of the facility's production of black mass. The parties are currently finalizing the site for the Spoke; construction and commissioning of the Spoke remains subject to receipt of all necessary Norwegian regulatory approvals.
Headquartered in Oslo, Norway, ECO STOR, a portfolio company of Norwegian utility company Agder Energi, is a specialist in second-life energy storage development business focused on converting used lithium-ion batteries into energy storage systems. ECO STOR's proprietary methodology introduces a complete solution for developers, builders, and homeowners looking for low-cost and energy-efficient storage.
"As a leading supplier of energy storage solutions in Norway, ECO STOR has pioneered the development of technologies that enable widespread deployment of second life EV batteries," commented Trygve Burchardt, CEO of ECO STOR. "Providing batteries with a second life is a significant step on the path to delivering stable, clean, renewable energy and we are pleased to provide a complete recycling solution through our new partnership."
Headquartered in Arendal, Norway, Morrow Batteries is building up world-class battery cell manufacturing with an annual capacity of 43 GWh, utilizing 100% renewable hydroelectric power to ensure the lowest possible CO2 footprint.
"Localizing the full battery supply chain to Norway's ‘battery coast' and South Norway is key to driving down our cell production cost, while simultaneously delivering the world's most sustainable batteries," said Terje Andersen, CEO of Morrow Batteries. "This partnership will develop a closed material loop ecosystem supporting European customers and will ensure we continue to deliver value from battery materials through re-use and recycling over the long term."
In support of executing the Norway Spoke, Koch Engineered Solutions (KES) has been engaged to construct, test, and ship the modular Spoke facility. This is an outcome of Koch and Li-Cycle exploring collaboration on key strategic capabilities across the Koch ecosystem, following the previously announced investment in Li-Cycle by Koch Strategic Platforms.
"We're excited to collaborate with Li-Cycle to advance this exciting project in the circular economy value chain," said Brian Boster, President of Optimized Process Designs (OPD), an engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) capability in KES. "Advancing innovation in the battery recycling/recovery space adds direct long-term value to our partners and helps ensure a future sustainable battery ecosystem."