Recyclng Case Study
Newalta is Canada's leading industrial waste management and environmental services company. We push beyond conventional thinking about waste, finding solutions that will contribute to our customer's bottom line and reduce the environmental footprint.
Surrette Battery - Battery Recycling
Since 1959, Surrette Battery Company Limited ("Surrette") has been a leading North American manufacturer of lead-acid batteries, based in Springhill, NS. Surrette produces batteries for railroad, marine and renewable energy applications under various industry-leading brand names.
CHALLENGE / OPPORTUNITY
While its traditional rail and marine battery businesses remain strong, over 50 percent of Surrette's production is now dedicated to offgrid renewable energy storage products. With this shift in customer demand, Surrette has increasingly focused on strengthening its environmental and recycling policies to complement this "green" business line. Surrette has partnered with Newalta to help improve its environmental stewardship through recovery and recycling of its products distributed in Canada.
As an environmental services provider focused on recovering valuable products from what was once considered waste, Newalta is an ideal partner to help Surrette achieve its "green" objectives of reducing its environmental footprint.
Newalta operates Canada's largest integrated lead recycling facility in Ville Ste-Catherine, Que. It receives over 8 million spent lead-acid batteries per year into its lead recycling process and has the capacity to recycle up to 200,000 metric tonnes of batteries and produce up to 100,000 metric tonnes of recycled lead per year.
Newalta helps facilitate the collection of used Surrette batteries distributed in Canada through its coast-to-coast facility network and ships them to Ville Ste-Catherine for processing. Spent lead and other battery components are then recycled for reuse in new batteries, thus creating a "closed-loop" recycling process for Surrette's products. In addition, all Nova PB-brand lead provided to Surrette from Newalta for battery production is 100 percent recycled.
Thanks in part to its battery recycling program in conjunction with Newalta, Surrette batteries contain over 60 percent fully recycled lead content. By recovering spent batteries and recycling the lead and other components, Newalta and Surrette are able to divert a significant volume of hazardous waste from landfill or incineration.
"Many of our clients are concerned with the 'cradle-to-grave' environmental proposition when selecting suppliers," says James Surrette, President, Surrette Battery Company Limited. "With Newalta's assistance, in recovery and recycled lead supply, we have been able to greatly improve our competitive position within the market."
As a result of lead recovery and recycling activities by companies such as Newalta and Surrette Battery, the lead-acid battery has the highest recycling rate of any consumer product at approximately 97 percent, according to Battery Council International.