The increase of e-mobility powered by renewable energy is a promising mitigation action for Kenya, where it could mitigate about 0.6MtCO2 in comparison with the BAU scenario in 2030. However, concerns related to dealing with the lithium-ion batteries – the heart of an electric vehicle – once they reach their end-of-life are a barrier for the expansion of e-mobility. Indeed, lithium-ion-batteries are a hazardous good, potentially inflamable if stored and a threat to the environment if put in a landfill. They are – however – also a valuable ressource and can be reused in applications such as stationary energy storage or recycled to regain valuable raw materials for the production of new batteries.
This short paper introduces current approaches towards dealing with the end-of-life problem of electric vehicle batteries with a focus on Kenya. It summarizes insights and best-practices from the global north and south and provides recommendations for developing an economically and environmentally beneficial circular economy for lithium-ion batteries that combines re-use and recycling.