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Recycler reaches deals with LG companies

Li-Cycle submits plans to Lordstown for facility near Ultium Cells plant

LORDSTOWN — Li-Cycle Holdings Corp., the Toronto-based lithium-ion battery recycler that will recycle scrap material from electric-vehicle battery-cell production at Ultium Cells, has a commercial agreement in place with South Korea’s LG Energy Solution for the recyclable material.

Also announced Thursday was a second agreement with LG Chem Ltd. and LG Energy Solution, this one for the sale of nickel sulphate from Li-Cycle’s hub in Rochester, N.Y.

Meanwhile, the process to build a 120,000-square-foot facility to recycle the manufacturing scrap and materials from Ultium Cells adjacent to the mega factory in Lordstown is underway.

“The Ultium Cells LLC recycling building architect, Greshman Smith, has submitted initial plans for review by the village planning and zoning department,” Tom Gallagher, vice president, operations for Ultium Cells, said.

With the new agreements, LG Chem Ltd. and LG Energy Solution, now can proceed to close the previously announced $50 million investment to buy common shares of Li-Cycle, according to the company.

Also, LG Chem Ltd. and LG Energy Solution have recognized Li-Cycle as their preferred lithium-ion battery-recycling partner.

“Together, we are driving sustainable global electrification through the creation of this milestone closed-loop ecosystem in the lithium-ion battery supply chain,” Ajay Kochhar, co-founder / CEO, of Li-Cycle, said.

Through a 10-year agreement, Li-Cycle will have the opportunity to recycle nickel-bearing lithium-ion battery scrap and other lithium-ion battery material from LG Energy Solution’s North America manufacturing sites.

It was May 2021 when Li-Cycle announced announced a multiyear agreement to recycle the scrap material from Ultium Cells, a joint venture of General Motors and LG Energy Solution.

In addition, under 10-year nickel sulphate off-take agreements with LG Chem Ltd. and LG Energy Solution, Li-Cycle will sell a combined initial allocation of 20,000 tons of nickel contained in nickel sulphate produced at Li-Cycle’s hub facility to the LG companies through its off-take partner, Traxys North America LLC.

It’s estimated the nickel sulphate to be sold to LG Chem Ltd. and LG Energy Solution will be enough to produce lithium-ion batteries that can power approximately 300,000 high-performing electric vehicles, according to Li-Cycle.

The hub facility still is under construction.

It was January when the recycling facility in Lordstown was announced. The center is the largest of Li-Cycle’s spoke facilities announced so far and the fifth planned for the U.S., according to the company.

The facility, expected to be built on land due west of the intersection of Hallock Young Road and Tod Avenue SW, should be operational in 2023.

It will employ at least 35 workers and will have the capacity to process up to 15,000 metric tons of battery-manufacturing scrap and other materials per year, according to Li-Cycle.

The company did not comment on a dollar investment.

Ultium Cells will build the plant that Li-Cycle will operate with technology that converts waste material into intermediate product, including lithium, cobalt and nickel. Li-Cycle will convert those materials into battery-grade materials at a Rochester facility, according to the company.

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