Circular economy strategies for electric vehicle batteries reduce reliance on raw materials
Baars, J. & Domenech, T. & Bleischwitz, R. & Melin, H. & Heidrich, O. (2021) Circular economy strategies for electric vehicle batteries reduce reliance on raw materials. Nature Sustainability.
The increased demand for lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles will require increased natural resources for the automotive industry, potentially resulting in new challenges and supply-chain risks.
To address this, circular economy strategies are needed, with the authors of this paper illustrating how these strategies can reduce the need for the extraction of primary raw materials.
The authors find that new technologies provide the most promising strategies to reduce the reliance on cobalt substantially but could result in burden shifting such as an increase in nickel demand. To avoid the latter, technological developments should be combined with an efficient recycling system.
They conclude that more-ambitious circular economy strategies, at both government and business levels, are urgently needed to address current and future resource challenges across the supply chain successfully.
The full paper can be found here.