September 24, 2021: “For all of its uncertainty, we cannot flee the future,” said East Penn CEO and president Chris Pruitt, also BCI president, welcoming attendees to the BCI Convention and PowerMart in Diego that’s being held for the first time in person since 2019.
Quoting former Texas representative Barbara Jordan, a lawyer who spoke at the Democratic National Convention in New York City in 1976, Pruitt said the next decade would be crucial for the lead battery industry.
“In the next five to 10 years we need to be thinking about what we need to focus on. There is optimism, but there are challenges that will take a lot of our time, like government mandates, EVs, renewables — we have to face them head on.
“We are in a defensive position from time to time, and we need to play more offensively. Research needs to be faster and better, our products better. We have strong leadership talent, world-class R&D and a sense of urgency. There’s nothing we can’t do as a collaborative unit.”
Pruitt thanked BCI’s team of communications staff, who had been working tirelessly to get their messages to policymakers and regulators who have influence on the industry.
One of its major victories had been in California, where lead batteries had been removed as an entry on the consumer safety product list.
“BCI communications has been wonderful over the past five years, it’s been professional, targeted, and meaningful,” he said, adding that its website Essential Energy Everyday had attracted 33,000 unique visits this year.
Pruitt also applauded the work of EUROBAT and CBI in getting exemptions for lead batteries from the End-of-Life Directive in the EU.
“The EU will continue to review it but the work of the ILA and EUROBAT is vital,” he said.
Attendance to the convention was down this year due to the travel restrictions imposed on travellers outside the US.