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Lead Batteries are Most Recycled Consumer Product in America

ST. LOUIS (November 15, 2017) – November 15 marks America Recycles Day – a day to remind people to recycle products and keep America beautiful. Most people think of recycling paper, plastic bottles or aluminum cans, and may be surprised to learn that lead batteries, like those used in cars, are actually the most recycled product in the U.S. The Doe Run Company (Doe Run) recycles approximately 13.5 million lead-based batteries each year in order to keep batteries out of landfills and give lead a second life for use in other products.

Lead batteries have a 99 percent recycling rate in the U.S., surpassing all other consumer goods. Comparatively, only 3 percent of lithium batteries, 67 percent of paper, 34 percent of glass and 55 percent of aluminum are recycled. Each year, Doe Run recycles enough batteries to cover about 137 football fields. Since 1994, Doe Run’s Resource Recycling facility has recycled approximately 324 million batteries, enough to circle the globe. This infographic shows how the battery recycling process works.

To celebrate America Recycles Day, the Battery Council International (BCI), in conjunction with the Advancing Lead Batteries Communications Initiative (ALBCI), released its 2016 National Recycling Rate Study. The study calculates the recycling rate of lead-based batteries and determines the domestic recycling rate for battery lead in the U.S. from 2012-2016.

“Our goal is to recycle and reuse as many batteries as possible as part of our commitment to provide an environmentally friendly source of energy storage,” said Mark Thorsby, executive vice president of Battery Council International (BCI). “On average, a new lead battery is comprised of more than 80 percent recycled lead battery material. Every component of the battery, from lead and plastic to sulfuric acid, is recyclable.”

Recycling existing lead is crucial to continue to meet the country’s lead needs and vital role in society. Lead-based batteries start more than 1 billion vehicles globally, store solar and wind energy, and provide back-up power in the event of a power outage.

Consumers play a key role in the recycling process by turning in used car, boat or ATV batteries at local retailers. Some consumer electronic equipment, including cell phones, old televisions with glass monitors and old computer monitors, may also contain valuable metals and materials, such as lead, and can be dropped off for recycling in communities across the state.

 

About The Doe Run Company

Based in St. Louis, Missouri, USA, The Doe Run Company is a privately held natural resources company and a global provider of lead, copper and zinc concentrates. Dedicated to environmentally responsible mineral and metal production, Doe Run operates one of the world’s largest, single-site lead recycling centers, located in Boss, Missouri, and mines from one of the world’s largest lead mining districts, also in Missouri. The Doe Run Company and its subsidiaries deliver products and services necessary to provide power, protection and convenience. Doe Run has operations in Missouri, Washington and Arizona. For more information, visit www.doerun.com and http://sustainability.doerun.com.