Stellantis and Orano Partner on EV Battery Recycling
Stellantis N.V. and Orano have jointly announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding to create a collaborative endeavour focused on recycling end-of-life electric vehicle batteries and scrap generated by gigafactories in Europe and North America.
This strategic move bolsters Stellantis' position in the electric vehicle battery value chain by ensuring additional access to critical resources such as cobalt, nickel, and lithium, essential for the ongoing electrification and energy transition.
Alison Jones, Senior Vice President of Circular Economy Business Unit at Stellantis, emphasised, "The United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals have underscored the necessity of innovative solutions like this partnership with Orano to address the challenges of depleting natural resources and promote sustainability. Aligned with our Dare Forward 2030 strategic plan, Stellantis is firmly committed to transforming its production and consumption model in line with the principles of a circular economy."
This joint venture leverages Orano's groundbreaking, environmentally-friendly technology, which deviates from conventional methods, enabling the comprehensive recovery of materials from lithium-ion batteries and the production of fresh cathode materials.
These materials often referred to as "black mass" or "active mass," can undergo refinement at Orano's hydrometallurgical facility, set to be constructed in Dunkirk, France. This process aims to enable the reuse of these materials in batteries, thus completing the loop within a circular economy.
The remarkable pre-treatment process, combined with cutting-edge hydrometallurgy technology, achieves impressive metal recovery rates exceeding 90%. This not only allows original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to meet recycling targets set by the European Commission for electric vehicle batteries but also ensures the sustainability of their business models.
In the backdrop of growing demand for strategic metals and Europe's pronounced reliance on these resources, Orano positions itself as a vital player within the integrated value chain, extending from battery recycling to cathode material production.
Guillaume Dureau, Orano Group Director of Innovation, R&D, and Nuclear Medicine, Magnets, and Batteries, expressed his enthusiasm for the partnership with Stellantis, stating, "We are thrilled to collaborate with a major player like Stellantis in the realm of recycling used electric vehicle batteries. We take pride in sharing our expertise and innovative, disruptive processes, enabling a genuine closed loop. Orano remains dedicated to fostering a low-carbon economy through the recycling of critical materials for the energy transition and the circular economy."
As an integral part of Stellantis' Dare Forward 2030 strategic plan, the Circular Economy Business Unit is actively striving to increase recycling revenues tenfold and attain over €2 billion in total circular economy revenues by 2030. Stellantis remains steadfast in its commitment to becoming a carbon-neutral corporation by 2038, accounting for all emissions, with a plan to offset the remaining emissions in single-digit percentages.
Furthermore, this newly established commercial recycling venture will offer solutions for managing end-of-life batteries and scrap from gigafactories to Stellantis' partners, its after-sales network, and other original equipment manufacturers.
Production is scheduled to commence in the early part of 2026, utilising existing Stellantis assets and infrastructure. Investment in retraining and upskilling Stellantis and Orano employees will open sustainable opportunities for these individuals in their new roles.
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