Phoenix Suburb Lands Major EV Battery Plant

Article originally posted on Commercial Property Executive on February 21, 2023

Ecobat’s first U.S. Facility Will Recycle Materials Needed for the Growing Number of Electric Vehicles.

Ecobat, reportedly the world’s largest recycler of batteries, will build its third lithium-ion battery recycling facility—and its first in North America—in Casa Grande, Ariz.

The facility is intended to initially produce an estimated 10,000 tons of recycled material per year, with plans to expand capacity to satisfy the increasing need to recycle lithium-ion batteries from the growing numbers of electric vehicles.

The Casa Grande facility will repurpose lithium-ion batteries reaching the end of their useful lives, by a process including sorting, shredding and separation “to produce a concentrated black mass containing the valuable materials in lithium-ion batteries,” Ecobat explained in a prepared statement.

The facility will be about 1 mile from an existing Ecobat Resources Arizona facility, which has been manufacturing battery anodes for 15 years.

Casa Grande is in Pinal County, about midway between Phoenix and Tucson, Ariz.

Ecobat is based in Dallas, but has multiple operational sites worldwide. In 2021, its lead battery recycling business fully recycled 70 million car batteries. The company already operates lithium-ion battery recycling facilities in Germany and the U.K.

Electric Mecca

With the addition of the Ecobat facility, Arizona has become a central hub of energy storage and recycling technologies, Sandra Watson, president & CEO of the Arizona Commerce Authority, commented in prepared remarks.

She isn’t wrong. Last summer, for example, high-tech battery manufacturer KORE Power announced plans to build a 2 million-square-foot, $1.25 billion lithium-ion battery gigafactory in Buckeye, Ariz. The company had previously intended to build “only” a 1 million-square-foot facility at the 214-acre site 40 miles from Phoenix.