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Lithium Australia subsidiary Envirostream has signed an exclusive agreement with the buses arm of Volvo Group Australia to recycle end-of-life lithium-ion batteries from its electric and hybrid bus fleet.

Volvo manufactures and supplies electric and hybrid buses to Australian customers including the Public Transport Authority in Western Australia and Transdev in Queensland.

The agreement is for an initial three-year term and will see Envirostream act as the exclusive provider of battery recycling services to Volvo for its electric and hybrid bus fleet in Australia.

“We are very excited by the exclusive recycling agreement signed with Volvo, a leading manufacturer of electric buses in Australia,” Lithium Australia managing director and chief executive officer Simon Linge said.

“The agreement validates our strategy to target large-scale OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) and ESS (energy storage systems) manufacturers to grow our share of the high margin, large-format battery collection volumes.

“Increasing our capability and growing volumes are strong drivers for the company reaching cashflow breakeven within the recycling business, which we aim to achieve in the near term.”

Envirostream has exclusive recycling agreements with Hyundai Glovis and LG Energy Solution.

Lithium Australia has an ongoing relationship with Mineral Resources (MinRes) for the development and operation of a pilot plant and the delivery of an engineering study for a demonstration plant.

The basis of Lithium Australia’s deal with MinRes is its novel lithium extraction process: LieNA. Both parties commenced piloting the LieNA processing technology in in March.

Lithium Australia is looking to establish a partnership similar to the one with MinRes for its lithium iron phosphate and lithium manganese iron phosphate products.