Lead battery industry leaders make pledges at EUROBAT forum
Reducing the levels of lead in workers’ blood was announced as a priority at a forum on June 15 by three influential players in the lead battery industry: Battery Council International, EUROBAT and the International Lead Association.
Lead battery manufacturers aim to achieve the 20mcg/dL target by the end of 2025 and have established an interim milestone of 25mcg/dL by the end of 2019, while lead producers are committed to achieving the arget of 20mcg/dL as soon as is reasonably practical.
At the moment the European binding limit is 70mcg/dL, said Rene Schroeder, who was appointed EUROBAT executive director at the general assembly during the forum.
“In 2019, lead battery manufacturers will review if the target of 20mcg/dl can be achieved even faster. The European lead battery manufacturing industry is committed to ensuring that its workforce is protected from workplace risks and to delivering a quality product that is essential to today’s transportation and energy storage needs,” he said.
The cuts will be made through improvements in manufacturing process technology, employee education programmes and “a commitment from the lead and lead battery sector to make the continuous reduction of employee lead exposure a priority”.
ILA managing director Andy Bush said this support would complement the benefits of lead batteries and help to secure predicted market dominance of lead batteries in many applications for the foreseeable future.
Johann-Friedrich Dempwolff, EUROBAT president and general manager at Johnson Controls, said batteries were vital to decarbonizing the European transport and energy sectors.
The forum also discussed a 2030 battery strategy that has been launched by EUROBAT this year to aim at winning support from Europe to develop the battery industry through legislation.
Priorities to decarbonize the transport sector would recognize electric vehicles, said chief global governmental affairs officer Amalia Di Stefano, with the European Association of Automotive Suppliers, but would not be considered competition for improved internal combustion engines.