AquaMetals wins $3.6 million tax break for recycling plant


AquaMetals, the start-up lead battery recycling firm, was on September 22 handed tax incentives worth $3.6 million from the Nevada government for the firm’s lead-recycling technology.
The tax break followed just days after Jerry Brown, the state governor in neighbouring California, signed into law rules forcing consumers to pay a $1 car battery tax from next April. The fee will help pay for the clean-up from the polluting Exide lead battery recycling plant in Vernon, Los Angeles.
The fee will double to $2 a battery after five years. It should initially generate $24 million a year and will eventually go towards other clean-up projects across the state as well as to that in Vernon.
Officials calculating the multi-million-dollar clean-up bill believe up to 10,000 homes have been contaminated around the former Vernon battery recycling plant.
“Decades of improper lead-acid battery recycling have left these communities to face enormous environmental challenges,” Brown said.
Meanwhile, AquaRefining uses a non-polluting, room temperature, closed-loop, water-based process to recycle lead-acid batteries. The resulting lead can be purer than mined lead.
The firm says the plant, in Taheo-Reno, Nevada, will create 50 jobs this year, rising throughout 2017.