Why does Battery Recycling Become an Inevitable Step for Protecting Humans and the Environment from Innumerable Hazards?
Over the past few years, there has been a massive growth in the usage of batteries in our day-to-day life. Starting from kid’s toys to mobile phones, cameras, scooters, buses, and even planes. This significant growth in the deployments of lithium batteries will consequently create a large flow of used batteries. Here, comes the need for battery recycling, which involves processing the retired batteries and ensuring to re-use them rather than disposition. In addition, battery recycling also holds a major role in protecting our environment from water and soil pollution.
If we notice, we will find that our dependency on electronic items has been increasing in the recent years. This rapid growth in the demand for batteries is mainly because batteries provide a convenient and instant source of energy by converting chemical energy into electrical one. Starring from toys to scooters, phones, buses, cameras, and even homes, batteries deliver a constant power supply by minimizing the reliance on the natural resources of energy. However, after the depletion of the electrical circuit inside the batteries, they should be disposed of safely. This continuous disposition of batteries could create a large portion of waste in the environment. Besides, the harmful materials present inside a battery can cause severe environmental impacts even after a safe disposition. So, here comes the need for battery recycling.
Why is Battery Recycling Important?
Battery recycling is the method of reusing and reprocessing the used batteries to reduce material waste and emerging environmental concerns. Some of the major reasons for battery recycling are listed below:
- Reducing Air, Water, and Soil Pollution: A battery contains many toxic, hazardous, and corrosive materials, such as cadmium, lithium, mercury, lead, nickel, zinc, etc. Therefore, when the depleted batteries are tossed into the trash, they gradually end up in landfills. After that, the soil starts absorbing the chemicals and hence, contaminates the ground as well as the surface water. This further can affect the health of aquatic plants and animals. Furthermore, the decaying of batteries on land can release harmful gases into the atmosphere which can directly contribute to global warming and affect our breathing system. Battery recycling helps in minimizing such negative impacts on the environment in an effective manner.
- Diminishing the Chances of a Fire Hazard: Batteries can catch fire easily depending upon the chemical composition of the batteries. Particularly, lithium batteries are dangerous. If they are not disposed of safely or exposed to high temperatures or the terminals are not completely finished, they can catch fire instantly. Battery recycling reduces the risk of fire hazards which can cause large-scale air pollution.
- Creating Circular Economy: The main motive of battery recycling is to produce new batteries by using the materials from the old ones. This creates a circular economy of manufacturing batteries by making the best use of the resources.
- Keeping Away Toxic Substances from Kids and Adults: Batteries are available in many shapes, such as cylindrical, square, button, and many more, and these contain many toxic and harmful components. It could be dangerous for kids or adults if swallowed mistakenly. Recycling batteries prevent humans from accidental hazards which can cause a severe burn or even death.
- Bringing Up an Ethical Thing to Do: Many batteries are manufactured by using cobalt as a main ingredient. Unfortunately, cobalt is mined in the Democratic Republic of Congo, with the help of slave laborers including adults and children. Battery recycling helps in manufacturing cobalt from used batteries and this way stops the slave tradition.
Future Landscape of the Battery Recycling Market
With the rising demand for recycled products and increasing supportive government initiatives for battery production, the global battery recycling market is expected to witness progressive growth in the approaching years. The market is anticipated to generate a revenue of $20,407.7 million and grow at a CAGR of 9.3% during the 2021–2028 timeframe. However, the lack of collection infrastructure and dearth of technologies may hinder the growth of the market in the upcoming years.
The Bottom Line
With the growing emphasis on saving non-renewable sources of energy by the governments of many nations, battery recycling can be an effective solution for the betterment of the environment and mankind. Furthermore, the increasing adoption of electric vehicles on a larger scale is expected to enhance the demand for battery recycling in the coming epoch.
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