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Glencore, Managem partner to produce cobalt from recycled battery materials

Posted By : Fiona Fernandes   |   Date : Feb 2 2022 12:52 PM

Glencore, Managem partner to produce cobalt from recycled battery materials

Switzerland-based mining and commodities trading firm Glencore and Managem, a Moroccan mining group, have entered into a partnership to produce cobalt from recycled battery material at Managem’s CTT Hydrometallurgical Refinery at Guemssa, Morocco, roughly 23 miles from MarrakechThe companies say their partnership highlights their commitments to support the electric vehicle industry in achieving its metals recycling targets.

Glencore and CTT intend to enter into a five-year tolling agreement for approximately 1,200 tons of recycled cobalt per year as well as nickel hydroxide and lithium carbonate, according to a news release about the partnership.

The partnership is conditional on a feasibility study to assess the commercial viability of modifying and deploying the CTT Refinery for recovering cobalt, nickel and lithium from black mass produced from recycled lithium-ion batteries. The feasibility study will focus on achieving high recoveries and a low carbon footprint. It is expected to be completed by the end of the first quarter, according to the companies.

Glencore says it will leverage its ability to source and recycle cobalt- and nickel-bearing products at its Canadian and Norwegian operations to supply cobalt-containing black mass to the CTT refinery.

Managem will provide lithium-ion battery recycling technology developed and tested in the pilot plant at the Reminex R&D center. This technology enables a high recovery rate of cobalt, nickel and lithium from black mass, the company says.

Glencore says it will market the recycled products to its global network of portable electronics and automotive customers as part of its commitment to support the transition to a low-carbon economy and to realize its goal of net-zero total emissions by 2050.

“Demand for cobalt is expected to increase significantly in the next decade, largely driven by the green energy transition,” Imad Toumi, chairman and CEO of Managem says. Most companies in the supply chain are targeting sustainably sourced materials, he says, adding, “We strongly believe that recycling will play a crucial role in addressing this demand.”

Toumi continues, “Managem is fully engaged in supporting the global circular economy through cobalt, nickel and lithium at the same time as mining cobalt with the highest CSR (corporate social responsibility) standards. This partnership with Glencore represents an exciting step up in our development in this field.”

“As the world seeks to address the challenge of climate change, primary/recycled cobalt and other future-facing commodities are set to play a pivotal role in decarbonizing energy consumption and delivering the electric vehicle revolution,” David Brocas, head cobalt trader at Glencore, says. “Glencore is already a leading producer, recycler and supplier of these commodities, helping to underpin our ambition of achieving net-zero total emissions by 2050.” 

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