Ford on Wednesday announced plans to partner with Tesla co-founder J.B. Straubel's Redwood Materials on battery recycling.
The plan is for recycled materials to be fed back into the United States EV battery supply chain, creating a so-called "closed loop," according to a Ford press release. This reduces costs, as well as the overall environmental impact of battery manufacturing, Ford said.
Based in Nevada, Redwood can recover up to 95% of materials like nickel, cobalt, lithium, and copper, Ford claims. In addition to recycling, the company also recently announced plans to manufacture anode copper foil and cathode materials.
Ford and Redwood Materials
This is the second recent Ford partnership related to the U.S. battery supply chain. Ford is also looking to a joint venture with SK Innovation, BlueOvalSK, for the bulk of its future EV battery supply. Theoretically, batteries produced from that venture could be recycled by Redwood Materials at the end of their lifecycles. The recovered materials could then be used in yet more batteries.
Other automakers are making plans for battery recycling as they work to ramp up EV production. Volkswagen also claims that it will be able to recover up to 95% of raw materials, while General Motors has named Canada's Li-Cycle as the official recycling partner for its Ultium modular battery system.
All of this fits in with President Biden's push for more U.S. EV recycling, to help address supply shortages. The administration has also indicated that it will prioritize bringing more of the battery supply chain to the U.S. to facilitate more American-made EVs.