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June 1, 2023
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Where Do EV Batteries Go When They Die?

Dozens of electric vehicles are scheduled to debut in the next few years and over 300 million electric vehicles are expected to be on the world’s roads by 2030. The lifetime for an EV battery is estimated to be 12 to 15 years in moderate climates, but that doesn’t mean the batteries end up in landfills when they die.

There are a number of companies working on lithium-ion battery recycling including Li-Cycle, Redwood Materials and Spiers New Technologies, or SNT.

SNT focuses on refurbishing, repurposng and recycling EV batteries to give them a second life. It already works with Volvo, Porsche, GM, Ford and others to take old batteries and make them new again. The estimated reuse lifetime of an EV battery can range anywhere from five to 30 years.

By 2050, the demand for graphite, lithium and cobalt is expected to increase by 500 percent because of the battery boom, so extending the life of an EV battery can reduce the need for critical minerals and new mines.

CNBC visited SNT at its headquarters in Oklahoma City to see how an EV battery is given a second life.

0:00 – Introduction
01:25 – What happens to old EV batteries?
04:18 – Business model
11:00 – Can mining be replaced?

Produced, Shot and Edited by: Sydney Boyo
Additional Camera: Magdalena Petrova, Liam Mays
Senior Producer: Katie Tarasov
Supervising Producer: Jeniece Pettitt
Animator: Mallory Brangan
Additional Footage: Spiers New Technologies

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Where Do EV Batteries Go When They Die?

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