Lithium Australia’s Envirostream powers ahead with exciting battery recycling updates  

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  • Envirostream Australia, 90% owned by LIT, is now the first fully permitted, mixed-battery recycler in Victoria.
  • The subsidiary has secured a planning permit for a change in land use to establish and expand a materials recycling facility in Campbellfield. 
  • Under a new agreement, Envirostream will collect spent batteries from Bunnings’ stores in Australia and selected outlets in New Zealand. 
  • The launch of the Battery Stewardship Scheme (BSS) in early 2022 is expected to provide a strong boost to Envirostream’s battery recycling endeavours. 

In a significant development, Lithium Australia’s (ASX:LIT) 90%-owned subsidiary Envirostream Australia Pty Ltd recently secured a planning permit from the Hume City Council.

Envirostream had applied to the Council for a change in land use to establish and expand its Campbellfield materials recycling facility that had minimal impact on the amenity and environment of the area. 

The permit makes Envirostream the first fully permitted, mixed-battery recycler in Victoria, seeking to reduce the volume of waste batteries relegated to landfills.

Moreover, LIT also reported on a supply of services agreement executed between Bunnings Group Limited and Envirostream for the collection of spent batteries from Bunnings’ stores in Australia and selected stores in New Zealand. The agreement that will continue until 30 June 2024 has been reached in line with the Battery Stewardship Scheme (BSS), to be rolled out by Australia’s Battery Stewardship Council in early 2022. 

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Environment’s engagement to meet waste and resource recovery

Envirostream’s activities are in line with the commitment of the Hume City Council to ensure infrastructure essential to meet waste and resource recovery. Since the application, Envirostream has worked closely with the Council to ensure its operations meet requirements of the planning scheme. The efforts led to the approval of the change-in-land-use application. 

Formal approvals, including the Hume City Council planning permit and the recently issued EPA operating licence, are critical for Envirostream to expand its operating throughput to recycle spent batteries at its Campbellfield facility.

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Envirostream is the first company to receive approvals specifically related to the recycling of spent batteries. The approvals represent a significantly essential commercial prelude to introducing the national BSS, scheduled for implementation in January 2022.

Agreement with Bunnings to facilitate battery collection

To gear up for the BSS, Envirostream and Bunnings have worked together to ensure that drop-off points for spent batteries are within the Bunnings infrastructure for customer convenience. Meanwhile, it would also facilitate an efficient spent-battery collection by Envirostream.  

Under the agreement, Bunnings has the option to extend the arrangement for a further 12-month period. 

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For Australia, service fees and rebates are related to anticipated rebates payable on a per kg-collected basis from the BSS commencement. 

Source: Copyright © 2021 Kalkine Media, Data Source: LIT update, dated 20 October 2021

Basel Import Permit to import mixed-waste batteries for recycling

Envirostream was also recently issued a Basel Import Permit (AUH21-020) by the Australian federal Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment. The permit allows the import of 100 tonnes of mixed-waste batteries from New Zealand to Australia. 

Under the permit valid until 14 October 2022, Envirostream will service Bunnings’ stores in New Zealand. Once imported to Australia, the waste will be recycled at Envirostream’s EPA-licenced Campbellfield facility and its Laverton North facility, which is currently being developed. 

Commenting on the recent agreement, Lithium Australia Managing Director Adrian Griffin said, “The Company is pleased to announce that Envirostream will commence a service contract with Bunnings, which is leading the way in the provision of convenient collection points for spent batteries ahead of the BSS. The creation of such a collection infrastructure is vital to improving Australia’s battery recycling rate and preventing spent batteries from being consigned to landfill.”

LIT shares were trading at AU$0.130 on 28 October 2021 (AEDT 10:32 AM).



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