Essential information for end of life vehicle dismantling, depollution and recycling

Adam Hewitt
AutoDrain T

IARC 2021 – a virtual reality

An important step forward to show that the European Auto Recycling Industry was returning to normality was the hosting of the IARC 2021, which took place last week in Geneva. 


IARC 2021 - a virtual reality f

Over 100 delegates arrived at the InterContinental Hotel to hear two days of presentations revolving around auto recycling. However, the event organisers were aware that COVID restrictions still applied in some countries. They managed to create a hybrid platform where another 200 attendees could participate in the event remotely.

The first keynote speaker was Jean-Philippe Hermine, VP of Environmental Strategy, Renault SAS, France. Jean-Philippe discussed increasing the life of a vehicle to extend the circular economy. He mentioned the politics that may affect vehicle recycling as it enters a new age and the demands upon materials and recycling. 

The second keynote speaker was Artemis Hatzi-Hull, the European Commission representative on the ELV directive. In her speech, she brought the delegates up to date on the review of the current directive and the probability of it becoming a regulation, including how it may extend to trucks, buses and motorcycles. Following her presentation, a panel discussion on the subject took place, which opened up to questions from the floor with varying viewpoints being answered by Artemis. 

The title for the first session in the afternoon was entitled Circular economy and ELV challenges. The phrase’ Circular Economy’ was dominant throughout the conference, with every speaker mentioning it and its impact. Catherine Lenaerts and Willy Tomboy introduced the audience to their new approach to the ATF handling of electric vehicles. Manuel Kindelan from SIGRAUTO provided an upbeat presentation on car recycling in Spain, which he said had a solid network and well-thought-out legislation and regulation.

The first day was brought to a close with a focus on dismantling, depollution, recycling and reuse. When it came to ELV scrap, Christian Pak from STEINERT GmbH in Germany questioned if ever-deepening sorting methods were necessary and their benefits. Johannes Chatzis brought everyone up to date with the IDIS system and concentrated on the information it provides for high voltage when it comes to end of life vehicle treatment. Finally, Sebastian Raubinger from SEDA based in Austria highlighted how an accident involving an EV inspired them to produce equipment to transport damaged electric vehicles. 

Day two began with a look at battery safety and second life. Jérôme Favero from ArcelorMittal Europe’s presentation was entitled ‘Safety Requirements of E-Mobility will increase the amount of steel in the Body-in-White designs’. He concluded that safety requirements of BEVs and more popular SUVs would tend to increase the amount of steel used in such vehicles. Also, the need to optimise range and a trend to CO2-equivalent emission reduction will drive vehicles to be lighter in weight. Watt4Ever’s Fredericq Peigneux drew attention to how they were making e-batteries circular. Christian Winkler from TES focussed on dismantling and shredding, which was dominated by the 4 Rs: Reuse, Repurposing, Recycling and Recovery. 

To follow was Jodok Reinhardt, CEO and Co-founder of Librec in Switzerland, who provided information on how OEM takebacks and how EV batteries will be collected throughout Europe by using a series of transport networks. Rounding off the session, Glenn Vercruyce of Belgium based Trislot N.V., discussed solutions when it comes to screening and filtering materials. 

After lunch, attention was steered towards recycled polymers. Thomas Sorensson, Scandinavian Enviro System, spoke about commercial and circular solutions to recover close to 100% of the resources in tyres. Lein Tange introduced everyone to next-generation recycling processes for plastics containing flame retardants in automotive and being part of a circular economy. Also, in his presentation, Georg Grestenberger from Borealis Services S.A.S. in France concluded that increasing the recovery and recycling rate for ELVs presented a significant opportunity to bring a new raw material source for automotive compounders. However, he also stressed the need to stay ahead of the game in driving a circular economy of plastics in automotive. 

The final session was designated to best available process technologies. Rik Debaere from Group GALLOO made the audience aware of innovations in air emission controls in ELV plants. Heiner Guschall of SICON based in Germany looked at total recovery and profitability regarding shredder residue. 

Jill Ledger-Bompard, ICM’s Marketing and Communication Director, commented:

“IARC21 went very well despite the challenges, and although the virtual participation was a great success, it is clear from feedback from our delegates that face to face meetings are still preferred for both business deals and personal exchanges. The auto recycling industry is in a state of metamorphosis and for this reason, the congress will evolve to continue to meet the needs of the market and the many players from the entire value chain.”

At the end of the two days, it was announced that a review for next year’s event would take place in advance of IARC 2022. Whatever is decided, next year will be easier to attend, and everyone can come together to be part of an important and valuable event on the ELV communities’ calendar.

Video on demand, interviews, plus virtual sessions are available by getting in touch with the IARC organisers. To find out more, click here.

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Adam Hewitt

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Owain Griffiths

Owain Griffiths

Head of Circular Economy at Volvo Cars

Owain joined Volvo Cars in June 2021 to lead Circular Economy in the Global Sustainability Team. The company has committed to being a circular business by 2040 and has financial, recycled content and CO2 based targets for 2025, all of which Owain is working across the company to make happen. Owain previously worked for circular economy consultancy Oakdene Hollins where he advised businesses on evidence led circular economy implementation. 

Turning into a circular business and the importance of vehicle reuse and recycling.

The presentation will cover the work Volvo Cars is doing to achieve 2025 but mainly focus on the transformational work towards 2040 and the business and value chain changes being considered. Attention will be paid to the way vehicles are being dealt with at the end of life and the complexities of closing material and component loops. Opportunities and challenges which Volvo Cars is facing will be presented including engagement with 3rd parties and increasing pressure from stakeholders.

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e2e Total Loss Vehicle Management [e2e] is the UK’s only salvage and automotive recycling network with nationwide, environmentally compliant sites delivering performance resilience and service reliability to the insurance and fleet markets.  The network’s online salvage auction drives strong salvage resale values and faster sales.  e2e’s salvage clients have access to the network’s stocks of over 5 million quality graded, warranty assured reclaimed parts. 

The power of the network model means e2e has the ability to influence industry standards and is committed to continually raising the bar whilst redefining the role and perceived value of the salvage operator.  Network members adhere to robust service level agreements, against which they are audited, in order to ensure performance consistency and a market leading customer experience.  

The salvage and recycling operating environment is evolving rapidly, and e2e is anticipating, listening and responding to changing market needs.  Regulatory compliance, ESG, reclaimed parts, customer experience, EVs, new vehicle technologies, data and reputation risk are just some of many considerations linked to the procurement of salvage services.  e2e will drive further added value to clients and members through the adoption and application of emerging technologies, continuing to differentiate its proposition and position salvage services as a professional partnership. 

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