Global alliance promotes responsible lead battery manufacturing and recycling
“We want to see an end to all informal and unregulated recycling in low and middle income countries.
The more governments and regulators do in these countries to provide incentives to ensure that used batteries are only recycled by high performing recyclers, and to crack down on unregulated recycling, the better.”
Joint statement by associations representing the lead, lead battery and recycling industries: ILA, Eurobat, BCI and ABR, July 2020.
Four associations representing the lead, lead battery and recycling industries, ILA, BCI, Eurobat and ABR, have formed a global alliance to help improve global standards in lead battery manufacturing and recycling. Our industries are committed to continuously improving, helping ensure that lead is manufactured and used responsibly to minimize any impact on people’s health or the environment.
The alliance aims to minimise exposure to lead in all regions of the globe. Known as the material stewardship initiative, it involves some of the biggest battery companies in the world. The project is built around a set of seven guiding principles involving companies committing to business practices that support environmentally sound manufacturing and recycling of lead batteries. One of the critical problems affecting some low and middle-income countries is the dangerous practice of substandard or informal manufacturing and recycling of lead and lead batteries. This can result in serious damage to human health and significant environmental pollution. Lead has a market value, and where there are few or no restrictions or regulations, informal recycling of batteries presents an opportunity to make money in some highly deprived communities. Member companies of ILA, EUROBAT, BCI and ABR can and are playing a significant role in reducing this problem, delivering on the commitments in the guiding principles.
We are sharing our expertise to help improve lead battery recycling practices in vulnerable countries through partnerships with NGOs, governments and other stakeholders.
And one of the commitments in the alliance’s guiding principles is to ensure companies adopt responsible sourcing practices. This involves checking that lead they purchase is produced using environmentally sound practices and in facilities that have a high standard of employee welfare.
Read more about our material stewardship initiative here.
Cover image credit: Boliden lead bars