While hybrid and electric vehicles have become renowned for their energy efficiency over the past few years, few consumers remember that the process of disposing your hybrid or electric battery used in the vehicle isn't always as environmentally friendly. Our favorite Japanese automaker, Honda, however believes that the entire lifespan of a hybrid and it's batter are quite eco-friendly, thanks in large part to Honda's latest battery recycling process.
Honda's newest battery recycling process ensures that the automaker is reusing rare earth metals extracted from nickel-metal hydride batteries. As Green Car Reports explains, "Using molten salt electrolysis, Honda can extract rare earth metals with 99 percent purity--the same as ordinary traded, newly mined rare earth metals. Up to 80 percent of the metals found in a battery can be extracted, and it's suitable for re-use on the electrodes of other batteries."1
Thus far, Honda's extracted these minerals from 386 Honda hybrid vehicle batteries that were named unsuitable for sale after the 2011 Japanese tsunami and earthquake in Japan. The brand's next step is repurposing the hundreds of thousands of hybrid batteries on the road today. When batteries are replaced at dealerships, they will be recycled for use in new Honda vehicles!
To find out more about how Honda is going "green," subscribe to our Honda blog here for regular updates. In the meantime, you can check out our entire selection of Honda hybrid and electric vehicles in our inventory of new Honda cars right here at our virtual dealership.