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Could this HK$300,000 hybrid taxi be the new look of Hong Kong cabs?

A new-generation taxi produced by Toyota with wheelchair access is slated to hit the Hong Kong market in the fourth quarter of next year, its supplier Inchcape announced on Thursday.

The new taxi will cost about HK$300,000 and be more environmentally friendly than typical local cabs as it is designed as a hybrid vehicle run by LPG and electricity, according to Inchcape’s mass transport deputy general manager David Lee.

“The vehicle has four seats and its rear side is equipped with an electric sliding door so it is wheelchair accessible,” he said.

Once the new taxis are launched in the city, Toyota will cease production of its current Comfort taxi model, which costs about HK$230,000.

At present, there are 18,138 taxis in Hong Kong, of which Toyota has a market share exceeding 90 per cent.

Lee estimated there were about 10,000 Toyota Comfort taxis on local roads that are over 13 years old and need to be replaced. “But there are only several thousands of this model available in the market for replacement, so we think there is a market for this new generation of taxi,” he said.

Orders for the new taxi cannot yet be placed in Hong Kong as the carmaker must wait for government approval of the importation date.
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Source URL: http://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/economy/article/2038545/hk300000-hybrid-taxi-hit-hong-kong-market-next-year-toyota

Hong Kong electric buses pulled from the road for third time in nine months

New World Services says five vehicles encountered tyre slippage problems in wet weather; manufacturer says they are now ready for use again

http://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/economy/article/2038314/hong-kong-electric-buses-pulled-road-third-time-nine-months

The two-year trial of Hong Kong’s first electric buses has been suspended for the third time in nine months due to tyre problems.

New World Services Holdings, which owns franchised bus companies Citybus and New World First Bus, confirmed on Wednesday that five electric buses were recalled in mid-September after drivers and district councillors raised concerns about tyres slipping in wet weather.

This is the third time the trial has been halted since it started in late December. The five buses were the first to hit the road after the government allocated HK$180 million to purchase 36 electric buses for the city’s transport companies in a bid to improve roadside air quality and reduce greenhouse gas emissions from petrol-driven buses.

Registered engineer and mechanics expert Lo Kok-keung said the frequent check-ups and recalls showed the buses were “quite problematic”.

“The check-ups carried out by the manufacturer cannot be good enough, or why would the buses be recalled again and again after being recalled the first time,” he said.

According to New World Services, the manufacturer of the five recalled buses – Shenzhen-based BYD – has improved the braking system to address “occasional slipping problems’’, but the buses would only return to service again after “thorough checks”.

The five buses are running on Hong Kong Island routes 11, 12, 25A, 78 and 81.

In addition to these buses, a second batch of five electric buses manufactured by Shandong- based Great Dragon International Corporation was also recalled before they hit the road.

The bus company confirmed that they were recalled because of problems with the stop bell. This means none of the firm’s 10 vehicles are now in use.

A total of 22 complaints were received about the five buses since their launch. They were mainly about air conditioning.

Eleven cases involving malfunctions and six traffic accidents involving the five buses were recorded in the same period, but the bus company said all were “minor incidents and were not caused by mechanical faults”.

Up to last month, the first batch of buses spent 55 days with the manufacturer – or 21 per cent of the total number of days since the trial was launched.

A BYD spokesman told the Post that the five buses that were recalled went through a “software upgrading process” and were now ready for use again.

“We did not encounter tyre slippage problems with BYD electric buses used elsewhere. The problem occurred for the first time in Hong Kong ,” the spokesman said.

Another company, Kowloon Motor Bus, put one BYD-made electric bus on trial for half a year in 2013, but it failed and was returned to the manufacturer.

Hong Kong’s electric car owners still stuck in the slow lane

Despite the buzz surrounding the Formula E race in the city, ordinary drivers are being held back by a lack of charging stations

http://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/health-environment/article/2025762/hong-kongs-electric-car-owners-still-stuck-slow

The Formula E race in Central this weekend is first and foremost a world-class sporting event, but for Hong Kong residents it will bring something equally unprecedented and precious – no roadside pollution, at least along Lung Wo Road, for a couple of days.

Though the thunder will be silent, the two-time champion Renault team will defend its Formula E title by the IFC and giant ferris wheel on the harbourfront, against teams from Audi, Jaguar, DS Virgin and Venturi, which was co-founded by actor Leonardo DiCaprio.

For one weekend in Central, Hong Kong will have arrived at a new era of electric vehicles, and our notorious air quality will be temporarily cleaner. And in theory, if petrol cars are gradually replaced by electric cars, then Hong Kong will enjoy cleaner air.

“Motor vehicles are the major emission source of air pollution in Hong Kong,” Secretary for the Environment Wong Kam-sing said in a written response to the Post. “It is challenging to improve roadside air quality in a city because vehicle exhausts are trapped by buildings flanking both sides of the road.

“The high development density in Hong Kong aggravates the challenge. Electric vehicles have no tailpipe emissions and are efficient in converting energy from the grid to power at the wheels. Replacing conventional vehicles with electric vehicles can help improve roadside air quality.”

But the reality is not that simple, as there are issues that cause daily headaches for many electric car drivers.

A random look at the car park at Pacific Place in Admiralty during a weekday lunchtime shows the shortage of charging stations. All four standard charging docks were occupied, as were the four Tesla fast charging stations, and there was a queue of Teslas waiting.

What is worse, many private residential car parks do not allow charging stations. As the percentage of electric cars is small, owners’ associations, made up mostly of non-electric car owners, are reluctant to do the extra work involved, and certainly not to shoulder the additional costs.

The government was well aware of this and Wong said “potential buyers should consider charging arrangements before buying electric vehicles”.

But he added that the government had been taking measures to alleviate the problem. Since April 2011, developers who put the necessary electric vehicle charging infrastructure in the car parks of new buildings, including provision of sufficient power supply and wiring to facilitate future installation of chargers, would be granted concessions on gross floor area.

And in June 2011, planning guidelines for new buildings were amended to “recommend” 30 per cent of private car parking spaces be installed with chargers.

Wong said the government wanted to encourage more developers and property management companies to provide charging services. “The government has been working with the private sector, including the power companies, in expanding the electric vehicle charging infrastructure in Hong Kong.”

But is what is being done enough?

“I think the government should make it mandatory for residential car parks to have charging stations,” said Professor Chau Kwok-tong, an expert in electric vehicles at the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of Hong Kong.

“It is easier for new buildings, though existing buildings with suitable electricity infrastructure should be allowed to install charging facilities. We can introduce a quota system, say a car park should be required to have 5 per cent of parking spaces with charging facilities, perhaps raising to 10 per cent in three to five years,” Chau said.

“The availability of charging facilities at home is very important to attract people to choose electric cars. If the other resident landlords are not happy to pay the extra costs, the estate management company can charge electric car owners a rent or fee to recoup the extra expenses.”

Dr Hung Wing-tat, an associate professor at Polytechnic University who teaches transport infrastructure design and development, also felt the government needed to do more to meet the growing demand for electric cars.

“At some older buildings, electricity supply may not be enough to support chargers, but setting up new facilities may be expensive. Buildings laws may need to be changed to meet the growing demand for electric cars.”

He said the appetite for electric cars would further increase as the government would soon tighten the emission standards of vehicles. “Many drivers will need to replace their cars. Electric cars don’t have emissions, so they are attractive in this aspect.”

However, Gordon Lam, chairman of the Electric Vehicle Club Hong Kong, was not optimistic that the government would step in to facilitate.

“I am acutely aware of the problem. Among our membership of about 100 who drive electric cars, 90 per cent of them do not have a charging station at home.

“Ideally the government should make it mandatory for newly built car parks to have a certain quota of spaces with charging facilities, but I think in reality this is difficult to implement, as it will involve the government confronting developers who do not want to set up the charging facilities.”

But he noted that some developers were already active in preparing the charging infrastructure, such as Hopewell, Sino Land, Wheelock, and Sun Hung Kai Properties, because it “may help to make their flats more attractive”.

There were now about 1,400 public chargers in Hong Kong, but Lam said there were problems at these stations too. “Charging spaces are often occupied by petrol cars.

There is no punishment for these unethical drivers, and often the guards simply say they can’t do anything about it.”

The most important benefit of electric cars is less pollution. But how serious is the pollution problem in Hong Kong? The environment bureau said the transport sector as a whole contributed about 14 per cent of greenhouses gases in 2013, while motor vehicles contributed about 14 per cent of local respirable suspended particulates and 20 per cent of volatile organic compounds in 2014.

Hung of Polytechnic University said a major pollution problem was the so-called canyon effect.

“Tall buildings along the roads in Hong Kong act like a tunnel and prevent the exhaust gas from petrol vehicles from dispersing. The problem is particularly bad in Causeway Bay, Central and Mong Kok.”

There are already several government measures to encourage electric cars. First registration tax is waived until March 2017, while companies that buy environmentally friendly vehicles are allowed 100 per cent profit tax deduction for capital expenditure in the first year of procurement.

By August 2016, there were 6,167 electric vehicles in Hong Kong, with 5,957 of them private cars. The figures had grown sharply from just 592 in 2013.

Dr Sammy Lee, a medical doctor, drives one of them – a blue Tesla Model S, the best-selling model of any brand in Hong Kong last year with 2,221 units. His experience shows why so many people are showing an interest.

“As a driver, choosing an electric car is all I can do to improve air quality in the city,” said Lee, who spent about HK$50,000 to install a charging station.

“The performance is great. Because there is no engine, it is really quiet, and there is much less need for maintenance. The ‘smart’ tools are also hugely appealing. My car is always connected to the internet via 3G, so it records every road and every turn it travels.”

Another perhaps unexpected benefit comes from the lack of a petrol engine.

Kevin Tsui, who drives a BMW i 3, said: “In the summer, I can keep the air conditioning running to keep myself cool even if I have parked my car, because the law to punish idling engines has exempted electric vehicles.”

The popularity of electric cars is being accelerated by new models. Tesla has just launched Model X in Hong Kong, an SUV with “falcon” doors and an impressive acceleration from 0 to 100km/h in just 3.1 seconds. The new BMW i3 has upgraded to a new battery with 50 per cent more capacity, increasing its range to 200km.

In order to reduce overall pollution, Joseph Lau, managing director of BMW Concessionaires (HK), said production of electric vehicles should not be just about power generation.

“For the electric vehicle industry to improve, it will depend on whether the industry can truly commit to a wholesome sustainability concept. For example, BMW i3 and i8 are produced with renewable wind energy in Germany,” Lau said.

“The future is bright for electric vehicles. With the progress in technology, there will be more advanced products and with a larger range and smart features.”

Chau of the University of Hong Kong said a major direction of development was wireless charging, both static and in motion.

“Instead of linking the wire to the car, the charging can be done wirelessly from a facility built underneath the car, a bit like smartphones charging wirelessly. This solves the risk that wires can carry a potential safety hazard. There are already prototypes of these.

“For the long term, the need to recharge during a long road journey is important. There is research about building wireless recharging facilities underneath the slow lane, so electric cars running on batteries can move to the slow lane and start charging away.”

But that is more for tomorrow’s world and will not be happening in Lung Wo Road this weekend.

Shenzhen cancels 1.8 billion yuan deal for BYD electric buses

Question mark hangs over major purchase of 2,919 electric buses from Shenzhen government-owned operator

Mainland electric car manufacturer BYD said the bulk of a 1.8 billion yuan (HK$2 billion) deal that it only just won from a Shenzhen government-owned bus operator last week has been cancelled.

The company said in announcements to the Hong Kong and Shenzhen stock exchanges late on Monday that Shenzhen Western Bus Co. has terminated a procurement plan for 2,228 10-metre long electric buses from its subsidiary BYD Auto Industry.

“Due to capacity adjustment, the procurement plan for 2,919 new energy vehicles (Batch 2) has been changed and the tendering process terminated,” the Shenzhen Transportation Research and Design Institute Co, agent for the purchaser, said in an announcement on its website on Monday.

BYD announced on July 7 that it was the first-ranked winning bidder for the tender worth 1,797 million yuan, excluding national and municipal government allowances.

The tender, comprising three batches, included 296 8-metre long electric buses, 2,228 10-metre long electric buses and 395 10-metre long electric buses.

BYD said its subsidiary had participated in the bidding process lawfully and that it “would work actively with the purchaser and relevant departments on the follow-up and determination of the order”. It also said it would make announcements if it receives any update regarding the status of the other two batches of the tender.

Shenzhen has set a target to make its fleet of 16,000 buses all powered by batteries by 2017, according to its mayor Xu Qin. Prior to this change, BYD had managed to win 3.8 billion yuan worth of tenders for a total of 6,775 electric buses – more than BYD’s total sales of electric buses last year – from Shenzhen Western Bus Co and Shenzhen Eastern Bus Co, which are government-owned bus operators in the city. It won a 1.81 billion yuan tender for 3,024 electric buses with Shenzhen Eastern Bus in April.

Neither BYD or Shenzhen Western Bus Co could immediately be reached for comment after office hours on Monday evening.
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Source URL: http://www.scmp.com/business/companies/article/1988554/shenzhen-cancels-18-billion-yuan-deal-byd-electric-buses

Technical staff in mainland China to blame for Hong Kong electric bus prototype going up in flames: report

Compromised water sealing of battery casings led to short circuit in HK$3.8 million vehicle

A sudden fire that destroyed a HK$3.8 million prototype electric bus last year was caused by “operational errors” by mainland technical staff, who compromised testing procedures, an investigation has confirmed.

The locally designed bus, the city’s first, was part of a HK$40 million project funded by the government’s Innovation and Technology Fund for the Hong Kong Productivity Council to develop electric vehicle technologies.

The council partnered with Green Dynamic Electric Vehicle, a subsidiary of Hong Kong-listed China Dynamics (Holdings), which splashed out HK$20 million for the project and was granted the intellectual property rights to the technologies.

The council’s incident report stated that several Green Dynamic technical support staff members who conducted tests on the bus in Dongguan last October had kept the council in the dark about some performance test results.

“Some of the technical support staff … compromised the water sealing of the battery casings during performance tuning and inspection. Subsequent seepage of water into the compromised battery casings eventually led to short-circuiting,” the report said.

The bus was reduced to a charred wreck after it went up in flames at a parking site in Yuen Long last December, just after it had passed a road test and was ready for commercialisation.

While it was designed for Hong Kong’s winding roads, the vehicle was made on the mainland due to a lack of manpower and space to build it in the city.

The report ruled out vandalism and battery overcharging as possible causes.

A spokesman for the council said that although the prototype was destroyed in the fire, the testing and research and development work had already been completed by the end of November last year, meaning Green Dynamic can obtain the intellectual property rights for the acquired technologies.

“This is a very precious experience for us so we will pay more attention in monitoring the work of technical staff for other projects,” said Jonathan Ho, the council’s general manager for corporate communication and marketing.

China Dynamics’ chief investment officer Godfrey Mak Shiu-chung said originally they expected to roll out the electric bus to the Hong Kong market early this year at a market price of HK$5 million.

“Because of this accident, our plan has been delayed,” he said. “So far we have not received any orders. A lot of Hong Kong buyers told us they would wait for the investigative report first and see.”

Mak pledged they would not repeat the same mistake as the battery casings will be tightly sealed off preventing any water seepage.

The report made a series of recommendations, including installing devices to prevent unauthorised opening of the battery casings and automatic fire extinguishing systems in the compartments housing the battery casings.
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Source URL: http://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/article/1937749/technical-staff-mainland-china-blame-hong-kong-electric-bus-prototype

Hong Kong’s hybrid electric buses found to use more fuel than normal ones

‘The numbers don’t look satisfactory,’ says environment official

Hybrid electric double-decker buses actually guzzle more fuel than conventional buses because of Hong Kong’s hilly roads and hot weather, according to preliminary results from an ongoing trial.

Environmental Protection Department officials admitted the six hybrid buses, trialled over a year, were “not as efficient as they thought”. They pointed to heavy use of air conditioning systems, which accounted for up to 40 per cent of the energy used in the summer.

Although fuel performance was better in winter, the buses still used 3.4 per cent more fuel on average than regular buses.

“The numbers don’t look satisfactory right now,” assistant director for air policy Mok Wai-chuen told the legislature’s environmental affairs panel on Wednesday.

“Because buses in Hong Kong use a lot of energy in air conditioning, the benefits of the hybrid mode are not maximised. We are allowing [the manufacturer] time to improve designs … and will come back to report on this later.”

The government spent HK$33 million helping the three franchised bus companies acquire the six hybrids in a bid to explore less polluting vehicle options. The two-year trial began in November 2014.

Lawmaker Tony Tse Wai-chuen questioned why none of the obvious issues were identified before the start of the trial and feared the experiment would end up being “futile”.

Separately, the department announced the start of its latest review of the city’s air quality objectives. These objectives were last tweaked in 2014.

It set up a working group to conduct the review and look into control measures “for other lesser air pollution sources” such as aviation emissions and volatile organic compounds, a major component of ozone.

The latest official data shows ambient concentrations of PM10, PM2.5, nitrogen dioxide and sulphur dioxide dropping 21, 24, 13 and 31 per cent respectively from 2011 to 2015.

Roadside concentrations fell 26, 21, 19 and 33 per cent in the same period respectively. But harmful ozone pollution at both general and roadside stations is still on the rise.

The Clean Air Network urged the government to set the new objectives according to the World Health Organisation’s most stringent air quality guidelines, as several of the current objectives only met its interim targets, which it said did not provide adequate protection to public health.
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Source URL: http://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/health-environment/article/1932126/hong-kongs-hybrid-electric-buses-found-use-more

World’s first pure electric double deck buses hit streets of London

http://www.dispatchtribunal.com/worlds-first-long-range-all-electric-byd-double-decker-buses-introduced-in-london/18529/

london-bus-electric

The Transport for London (TfL) has put into service five all-electric double deck buses thereby making London the first city in the world to have pure electric public transport.

Manufactured by Bye Europe, each of the pure electric vehicles measures 10.2 meters in length and features full air conditioning offering seating for 54 passengers with a further 27 standees spaces (total passengers: 81). The buses pack BYD Iron Phosphate batteries that deliver 345 kWh of power and can run for up to 190 miles of typical urban driving according to the internationally recognised SORT test conditions. Recharging takes just four hours and can be completed overnight using low cost off peak electricity and this is more than enough to handle most daily duty cycles, BYD says.

The buses were commissioned into service at a short ceremony on March 16 with London’s Deputy Mayor of Environment and Energy, Matthew Pencharz formally receiving the first bus from BYD Europe. London has become the first city to have on its revenue services routers, world’s first zero-emission, long-range, all-electric BYD Double-Decker buses.

Pencharz during the event that the running costs of these buses as well as some of the maintenance and operations cost are much lower than currently used buses. With zero-emission and zero-tailpipe-pollution, there is a huge environmental benefit specifically for London where pollution levels are relatively high compared to some similarly sized and populated cities around the world.

Leon Daniels, TfL’s Managing Director for Surface Transport, said: “BYD are a brilliant supplier. They lead the world in electric bus technology and we thank them for their efforts to make this new double decker a reality”.

As the plan goes, currently TfL is commissioning five of the all-electric double decker buses on Route 98 operated on behalf of TfL by Metroline. Route 98 was chosen given its status as a pollution hotspot in the city.

BDY Europe will be providing support to TfL and Metroline for installation of fast charging equipment at Metroline’s Willesden Bus Garage in north London. Additionally, BYD will provide driver training for the bus operators.

BYD, the world’s largest electric vehicle manufacturer, designed and developed the vehicles to Transport of London’s specifications. The five buses scheduled for deployment are more than 33 feet long and feature air conditioning, seats for 54 passengers with space for 27 standing passengers (81 total).

The buses are equipped with BYD-designed and built Iron-Phosphate batteries, delivering 345 kWh of power that come with a Industry-benchmark 12 year battery warranty, the longest electric battery warranty available. The batteries can power the bus for over 24 hours and up to 190 miles of typical urban driving on the service routes with a single daily recharging requiring only four hours. TfL plans to charge the buses overnight using low-cost, off-peak electricity to provide additional cost savings.

Volvo sells 11 plug-in buses to Belgian city

https://chargedevs.com/newswire/volvo-sells-11-plug-in-buses-to-belgian-city/

volvo electric bus

Volvo has won an order for 11 plug-in hybrid buses from the city of Namur in Belgium, the largest order to date for the company’s electrified buses. The buses will run on electric power within the city’s new zero-emissions zone.

Public transport authority TEC, which transports more than 250 million passengers per year, is also buying two automated chargers from ABB.

TEC is buying the bus system as a turn-key solution. Volvo will be responsible for maintaining both the vehicles and the charging stations. The new e-buses are scheduled to go into service towards the end of 2016.

Volvo’s 7900 Electric Hybrid has an electric range of about 7 km. The batteries are fast-charged in a few minutes at end stops. The company estimates that the e-buses can be powered by electricity for up to 70% of operating time, and will deliver 60% lower energy consumption than a legacy diesel bus.

volvo electric bus 2

ABB’s bus charging system uses an inverted pantograph, and features a modular design offering charging power of 150 kW, 300 kW or 450 kW.

“Electric bus systems are cost-efficient solutions for cities to reduce the problems of poor air quality and noise. Together with ABB, Volvo has a complete and competitive offer for cities around the world that want to switch to a sustainable public transport system,” said Håkan Agnevall, President of Volvo Buses

Five Hong Kong electric buses pulled from service in under two weeks due to glitches

The No 11 Citybus went into operation on December 27, covering a circular route from Central Ferry Piers to Jardine’s Lookout.

The No 11 Citybus went into operation on December 27, covering a circular route from Central Ferry Piers to Jardine’s Lookout.

BYD, the Shenzhen-based manufacturer, blames minor software problem it says has now been fixed

Five electric buses have been taken out of service with glitches after less than two weeks on the road.

Checks on three Citybus vehicles and two from New World First Bus revealed problems with the exit doors, so they were called back to the depot for maintenance.

“The doors opened when the rubber trims of the door were pushed while the buses were still,” said a spokesman for New World Services, which owns the two franchised bus companies.

“This issue does not occur when the bus is in motion. We have recalled the buses and contacted the manufacturer to follow up the problem.”

The manufacturer, Shenzhen-based BYD, blamed minor problems with the software.

“We have updated the software and retuned the buses to NWFB and Citybus for a thorough inspection,” a spokeswoman said.

She stressed it was the first time anywhere in the world that the problem had surfaced and that the company would keep in close touch with the bus companies to ensure passenger safety.

The city’s first electric bus – a battery-powered, single-decker with 31 seats – hit the roads on December 27. The Citybus vehicle went into operation on the circular No 11 route from Central Ferry Piers to Jardine’s Lookout.

Two more Citybus circular routes, No 12 and 25A, started running over the next two days, while two New World First Bus routes, No 81 and 78, launched on December 28 and January 5.

The Transport Department said the buses had passed safety tests and it would keep an eye on the issue.

Breakdowns of electric buses made on the mainland have raised safety concerns.

The Hong Kong Productivity Council rolled out its first locally designed, made-in-China electric bus for road tests in October, but it caught fire a month later.

In 2013, Kowloon Motor Bus put a BYD green bus on trial for half a year, but if failed and was returned to the manufacturer.
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Source URL: http://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/health-environment/article/1899539/door-glitch-forces-hong-kong-electric-buses-road

CEC Report: Electric Vehicle Battery Recycling to Surge

http://waste-management-world.com/a/cec-report-electric-vehicle-battery-recycling-to-surge

A new report outlining best practices to recapture and recycle the materials used in electric-drive vehicle (EDV) batteries once they reach end-of-life has been published by the Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC).

According to the CEC, an organisation intended to facilitate collaboration and public participation to protect the environment in North America the context of increasing trade and social links among Canada, Mexico, and the US, the market in North America for electric-drive vehicles has surged over the last 10 years and the supply of end-of-life batteries for EDVs is expected to continue to increase.

The report sais that this represents a vital opportunity to recapture and recycle the valuable materials used in EDV batteries, such as nickel, cobalt, steel, and other components.

The study—carried-out in partnership with Environment Canada, Mexico’s Secretaría de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales (Semarnat) and Instituto Nacional de Ecología y Cambio Climático (INECC), and the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) – examines how EDV batteries are currently managed at end-of-life across North America to best protect human health and the environment.

The report, Environmentally Sound Management of End-of-Life Batteries from Electric-Drive Vehicles in North America, warned that design changes to incorporate less costly materials in EDV batteries need to be assessed to ensure the continuing environmentally sound management of the batteries at end-of-life.

This report characterises the types, quantities, and composition of batteries used in EDVs in North America, and outlines best practices and technologies to support their environmentally sound management at end of life

Key Findings and recomendations

  • It is projected that about 276,000 EDV batteries will reach EOL in North America in 2015
  • Most of these batteries are likely to be nickel metal hydride (NiMH), which is the predominant battery chemistry used in HEVs
  • By 2030, almost 1.5 million EDV batteries will reach EOL. By that time, close to half the EOL EDV batteries will be lithium-based, with the remainder being NiMH batteries
  • The constituents of EDV batteries (mostly nickel from NiMH batteries and cobalt from Li-ion batteries) provide an economic incentive for recycling at this time. Battery designs are changing so that they contain less-valuable materials; this is a concern for the economics of future recycling efforts
  • Large auto manufacturers such as Toyota and Honda are establishing reverse supply chains to ensure that EOL EDV batteries are recovered and properly recycled
  • Companies already in the battery recycling business (Retriev, RMC, Umicore, Glencore/Xstrata, etc.) can process large-format NiMH and Li-ion batteries as long as they are broken down to smaller components (cells or packs). Companies with smelting operations (sometimes large global companies such as Umicore, Glencore/Xstrata, etc., with global supply chains) are interested in recycling EDV batteries because of their metal content
  • The economics of recycling EDV batteries depends on the value of the metals and other materials which can be recovered. In some cases, companies pay a credit against a processing fee. In other cases a tipping fee is charged
  • The recycling/processing infrastructure for EDV batteries is in its infancy, but large players are already in the market and are assessing options for future expansion. It is likely that more players will emerge over time as the supply of EOL EDV batteries increases.

According to the authors, governments should also be vigilant so that appropriate legislation is in place to support and promote the environmentally sound recycling of these batteries.