Some interesting news rolled into our inbox today. Specialized have teamed up with Redwood Materials – a company hailing from Carson City, Nevada with an intimidatingly strong staff resume on renewable energy. The goal of the partnership is to spearhead an e-bike battery recycling program. At MTB-Mag we’ve been wondering for some time now what, if anything, will happen with the battery cells from e-bikes as they are inevitably phased out or reach end of life. While this is just the very beginning of a foray into improved sustainability, here is what Specialized has passed on to us…
Specialized announced a partnership with recycling start-up, Redwood Materials, to tackle battery recycling for the most popular electric vehicle – bikes.
With the expected growth in the e-bike market, local transportation looks a lot more like an e-bike than a car. And much like the conversation around electric vehicles, this means millions of e-bike batteries once they hit their end of life.
Specialized was founded with the mission to inspire riders everywhere. For nearly half a century, one goal has remained constant; deliver the safest, highest performing, most long-lasting bikes available. We design our products from the start to not only last decades, but to minimize the environmental impact at their end-of-life and are committed to finding an effective path for re-use and recycling of everything we create.
Here are the details:
- Starting first in the US, every Specialized bike battery in the United States will have a pathway to Redwood by the end of 2021. We will then roll this out to our other markets starting in 2022.
- Redwood Materials brings a low-energy, sustainable recycling process and technical expertise in re-using materials in future product creation, allowing us to focus our efforts on re-use. Together, we will recover materials we can bring back into our manufacturing while also collaborating on ways to improve our design for better recyclability at end of life.
- The goal is to benefit the entire industry. We will share these learnings on logistics with industry organizations and others in the bike and micro-mobility categories to encourage responsible recycling as the e-bike category continues to grow.
The majority of our e-bike batteries have yet to reach end of life. This partnership allows us to get far ahead of the potential long-term impact, including infusing new design practices in future products. We will share more details on how riders and retailers can participate as we roll out these programs by the end of the year.