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Volkswagen partners with Redwood Materials to recycle EV batteries

It will be many years before the battery packs in these ID.4s need recycling, but when that happens VW and Redwood will be ready.

Enlarge / It will be many years before the battery packs in these ID.4s need recycling, but when that happens VW and Redwood will be ready. (credit: Volkswagen)

Volkswagen is in the midst of a huge electrification effort, spurred on by a combination of dieselgate and stringent fleet emissions targets in Europe. Last week, the company broke ground on the first of six European battery factories and is actively looking at building one or more similar plants here in the US. If and when that happens, Volkswagen may well make those batteries using material recycled from older electric vehicle batteries, thanks to a new collaboration with Redwood Materials.

“Redwood Materials is a great partner to help us accelerate EV adoption in America. This collaboration allows us to move closer toward our goal of closing the loop for a circular EV economy, giving American consumers yet another reason to go electric,” said Scott Keogh, president and CEO of VW Group of America.

As we explored yesterday, the lithium-ion battery in an electric vehicle should see little loss of storage capacity over the course of a decade. But eventually, batteries will degrade to the point where it makes more sense to repurpose them as static storage (once they can only hold 60–70 percent of their original charge) or eventually recycle them.

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