Everything that mankind creates to make life easy, somehow always presents an environmental problem. One way or the other, there is almost always an issue.
Now Electric Vehicles (EVs). These are the next big thing and most certainly much much better than the currently used fuel guzzling cars. It wins all accolades on the environmental front, right? Well, apparently not so.
In 2018, world over some 2 million cars were sold and by 2040, 50% of all cars are expected to be electric. That’s great but at the same time does anyone know what will one do with the huge mountain of lithium-ion batteries that power these cars once they reach the end of their useful life span?
Based on the number of electric cars sold in 2017, which was one million, researchers in the United Kingdom calculated that there will be 250,000 metric tons of unprocessed battery pack waste when these EVs reach the end of their lives in about 15 to 20 years; that’s enough to fill 67 Olympic swimming pools.
Thus now a lot of research is going into recycling of these batteries. Lead batteries have a 95% recovery rate as a lot of research, over the years has gone into developing technology to recycle them. The same now needs to happen for lithium batteries where they are seen as an opportunity and not a burden.