Battery industry makes last stand against ban

European battery manufacturers, cadmium suppliers and recycling firms are finalising a draft voluntary agreement on battery recycling in order to avoid a Commission ban on nickel cadmium in rechargeable batteries.

The agreement aims to achieve a recycling rate of 75% of nickel cadmium batteries by 2004 through an EU-wide collection scheme. The Environment Directorate of the Commission proposes a ban on all batteries containing cadmium by 2008. Research conducted by the University of Stockholm apparently shows that alternative battery compositions, such as nickel metal hydride, are viable.
However, this view is contested by the industry who believe that for most applications, especially processes involving high-power tools, nickel cadmium batteries are the only viable option at the moment.

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