Lithium-ion battery recycler plans Alabama facility


Lithium-ion battery recycler Li-Cycle Holdings Corp. said it will build a fourth commercial recycling facility in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

The Toronto-based company previously planned three North American spoke facilities; its Kingston, Ontario and Rochester, New York locations are operating; and a Gilbert, Arizona, facility is being built.

The company said the southeastern U.S. is emerging as a critical region for the lithium-ion battery supply chain, as battery manufacturers and automakers set up operations in the region.

Univar Solutions Inc. will be an anchor battery feed supply customer for the Alabama facility, following on Li-Cycle’s previously announced on-site partnership with the company to provide waste management for electric vehicle and lithium-ion battery manufacturing.

The facility will be able to process entire vehicle battery packs, without dismantling.

When completed, Li-Cycle’s Spoke 4 facility will have an initial capacity of up to 5,000 tons of battery manufacturing scrap and end-of-life batteries per year. That will bring its total North American recycling capacity to 25,000 tons per year.

The Tuscaloosa site is also being developed to accommodate a future, second 5,000 ton processing line, which would increase capacity at the Tuscaloosa site to 10,000 tons per year. The Alabama plant is projected to enter service by mid-2022 and is expected to create an initial 30 jobs.

The facility will be able to process entire vehicle battery packs, without dismantling.

Financial results

The company also reported that its revenues grew to around $3.0 million for the first nine months of 2021. That compared to roughly $0.3 million in the prior-year period. It said the increase was due to increases in recycling services and product sales as processing at its Kingston and Rochester facilities grew and as new battery supply customers were acquired. It said nine-month revenues from product sales were $2.7 million, while revenues from recycling services were $0.3 million.

The company’s nine-month net loss widened to $21.6 million, up from a loss of $4.8 million in the prior-year period.

The company’s Arizona facility will have two processing lines and a total recycling capacity of 10,000 tons of lithium-ion batteries per year. Li-Cycle said it expects the first processing line there to enter service in early 2022, with a second processing line to commence operations during 2023.

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