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Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia Visits California Battery Plant

Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia Visits California Battery Plant

On September 26, 2019, representatives from U.S. Battery and Battery Council International were pleased to host Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia (D-Bell Gardens) at U.S. Battery’s manufacturing facility in the city of Corona. Assemblywoman Garcia is an author of AB-142, the Lead Battery Recycling Act (2016) which requires the Department of Toxic Substances Control to investigate and clean up properties impacted by closed lead battery recycling facilities. Additionally, the legislation stabilizes the funding for the program by increasing the current fee on battery manufacturers and making it permanent.

The facility tour showcased U.S. Battery’s process for manufacturing deep-cycle batteries, which are used for a variety of consumer and commercial applications, including energy storage to support solar and wind energy generation, and zero emissions backup power systems. These applications will be especially important in California, which leads the nation in the fight against climate change and has established ambitious goals to curb emissions of climate-forcing pollutants. To achieve these goals, the state will need to avail itself of all viable clean energy technologies, including lead batteries.

The U.S. Battery manufacturing facility is part of the lead battery industry’s overall contribution to California’s economy:

  • 3,056 jobs
  • $195.9 million in annual labor income,
  • $332.9 million in annual gross state product (GSP),
  • $998.6 million in annual output (overall economic benefit), and
  • $92.9 million in annual government revenue.

These benefits are widespread and support a variety of industries throughout California. For details on the economic contribution of the lead battery industry, visit: www.essentialenergyeveryday.com

Battery Sorting, Training Key To Safe Recycling Efforts

Lithium-ion batteries have become part of our daily lives. They have proven useful for powering many of the electronics that we rely on, from cellphones and power tools to a growing number of electric vehicles. Their chemistry and construction, however, are not compatible with the process used to recycle lead-acid batteries. As a result, the Battery Council International (BCI) has growing concerns that more Lithium-ion batteries may be introduced into the lead-acid recycling ecosystem. The results of such contamination can result in explosion and fire that can cause injury to recycling center personnel and equipment. Lithium-ion batteries must be taken to a proper recycling location to be disposed of these facilities are not the same as lead battery recycling centers. Visit the BCI website to find out where to recycle lithium-ion batteries near you.

Properly Identifying Lead-Acid and Lithium-ion Batteries

Some of the best ways to tell the difference between a lithium-ion battery and a lead battery include:

1) Weight – Lead batteries typically weigh almost double that of a lithium battery of the same size.

2) Labeling – Lead batteries are labeled with the letters PB or have the word Lead Battery somewhere on the battery. Lithium-ion batteries have the letters Li or have the words lithium-ion somewhere on the battery case.

3) Terminal Styles – Most lead batteries have two protruding terminals with a light gray appearance. Lithium batteries may have a number of different styles of terminals.

If you’re still not sure what type of battery you have, you should remove the battery for closer inspection to find a label or other markings that may indicate the chemistry.

The BCI has created a toolkit that can be used by companies, to help employees identify and ensure that lead and lithium batteries are not recycled together.  The toolkit includes training videos, as well as a poster and flyer that can aid lead battery sorters and handlers with proper identification.

Video: https://youtu.be/4TPnUrENTRc

Your Batterty Powered Golf Car May Be Great For The Environment

The Flooded Lead-Acid Batteries In Your Golf Car Provide Renewable “Green” Energy

For several decades, golf cars have extended beyond the golf course and have been the main mode of daily transportation in resort and retirement communities to ease traffic congestion and reduce noise. With an increasing global interest focused on reducing emissions, utilizing renewable energy sources, and protecting the environment, various industries are taking a second look at the old battery-powered golf car.

The advantages of the electric golf car stem from those that use flooded lead-acid batteries. At first, this seems contrary to the purpose, but a closer look at what is happening with this segment of the battery industry reveals a much greener and sustainable method of power.

Cost Effectiveness

According to Fred Wehmeyer, U.S. Battery Vice President/Engineering, in most cases, flooded lead-acid batteries remain as the most cost-effective method for powering golf cars and small electric vehicles over the long-term. Some would argue that Lithium-ion batteries provide a better solution. Although Lithium battery packs may provide longer cycle life, comparing actual amp-hour capacity and battery pack energy (kilowatt-hours) often shows that the flooded lead-acid battery pack provides the most cost-effective solution at an overall purchase cost and operational cost per kilowatt-hours.

Renewable And Sustainable Advantages

One of the biggest benefits to utilizing golf cars with flooded lead-acid batteries is that the batteries are recycled at a rate of 97 to 99 percent, with the recycled lead going back into new golf car batteries in a closed-loop system. According to the Battery Council International, lead recyclers undergo some of the most restrictive emissions regulations. The process of recycling lead combined with tough emissions standards has produced new methods of recycling with reduced emissions that are far below EPA regulations. The BCI reports that contamination in the air has dropped by 99 percent since 1980. In addition, a recent study released by the BCI suggests that the U.S. lead battery industry enables more than 95,000 jobs for American workers and contributed more than $28 billion in total economic output to the national economy in 2016.*

It’s easy to see why many industries have continued to utilize flooded lead-acid batteries to power everything from fleets of golf cars, aerial lifts, cleaning machines and more. In addition to reducing annual operating costs, industries and individuals embracing battery power are also doing their part to help the economy and the environment.

For more information and maintenance tips on batteries for your electric vehicle, visit www.usbattery.com.

*Lead Battery Industry Provides Billions in Economic Benefit, Provides Gateway to Middle Class – Battery Council International February 1, 2018

How To Recycle A Flooded Lead-Acid Battery

Recycling Deep Cycle batteries is one of the most important aspects of owning or using battery powered machinery and vehicles. Flooded lead-acid batteries used in golf cars, automobiles, floor cleaning machines, RV’s and more, are recycled at the highest rate of any commercial product; a rate greater than 99 percent.

Where to recycle batteries is the first critical step for this successful process to begin. According to the Battery Council International (BCI), a not-for-profit trade association formed to promote the interests of the international battery industry, batteries should first be identified. Flooded lead-acid and lithium-ion batteries are two very different types of batteries, and cannot be put into the same recycling process. Battery recyclers will indicate what types of batteries they can accept, so read the labels and make sure your batteries go to the right place.

The next step is to visit https://www.call2recycle.org. This website offers resources for individuals and businesses on where the best recycling locations are in your area. The website also helps to find recyclers that allow for drop-off or who offer pick-up services.

Doing your part to recycle batteries is key to continuing the success of the battery industry and its continued growth. For more information, visit www.usbattery.com.

Lead Batteries The Most Recycled Product In The U.S.A. According To The EPA

The Environmental Protection Agency compared recycling rates for a multitude of materials and found that lead-acid batteries had the highest recycling rate of all consumer products. The facts were published in a June 2015 EPA report titled Advancing Sustainable Materials Management: 2013 Fact Sheet. The report assessed the disposal and recycling trends in the USA. In a 2013 study within the report, the EPA found that the rate of lead-acid battery recovery was about 99 percent (2.85 million tons), the highest recycling rate over other products such as newspapers, yard trimmings, aluminum cans, tires, consumer electronics, glass, PET bottles and more.

“The recycling infrastructure for lead-acid batteries is a closed loop (cradle to cradle) system,” says Fred Wehmeyer, Senior Vice President of Engineering at U.S. Battery Manufacturing. “As an example, new flooded lead-acid batteries are manufactured from recycled raw materials and the safe delivery methods used to ship batteries worldwide are also the same methods used to return spent lead-acid batteries to be recycled. Throughout the years the process has become extremely refined and efficient, making it one of the most successful environmental reclamation systems in existence.”

According to the Battery Council International, a variety of processes go into recycling lead-acid batteries in which recycling facilities are controlled under some of the strictest U.S. EPA regulations. Innovative systems have been developed to capture all of the components of lead-acid batteries for recycling. For example, lead from spent batteries is smelted and refined to be reused to build new lead-acid batteries. The sulfuric acid electrolyte is also captured and neutralized during the recycling process and then processed into fertilizer.

With a high recycling rate and low operating cost, the FLA battery remains the best solution for most electrically powered vehicles such as golf cars, floor maintenance machines, access lifts, and other battery operated vehicles. It is also the most efficient technology for storing energy and has the longest track record for safety and reliability. So when you combine this with the highest recycling rates on the planet, it stands to reason that this 150-year-old technology has definitely evolved into an energy source that’s hard to beat.
For more information on flooded lead-acid batteries and battery recycling, contact U.S. Battery Manufacturing, 1675 Sampson Ave. Corona, CA 92879. (800) 695-0945. Visit https://www.usbattery.com.