Elkem selects site for potential large-scale battery materials plant in Norway

Elkem ASA, Oslo, Norway, today announces that it has selected Herøya Industrial Park as the site for a potential large-scale plant for battery graphite production in Norway. The project, named Northern Recharge, aims to supply the fast-growing battery industry through a competitive production process and make batteries greener with lower CO2 emissions.

Based on conclusions from the pilot, Elkem will evaluate the basis for competitive industrial production with its Northern Recharge project. The project has now selected Herøya Industrial Park, one of the biggest industrial parks in Norway, as the site for a potential large-scale plant.

“The production of battery materials represents one of Elkem’s biggest growth opportunities. The demand for batteries is surging, as a result of the rapid growth of electrification in transport and increasing need for energy storage in a sustainable future. This requires new production capacity for battery materials, and we see significant opportunities for a specialised product with a green footprint,” says CEO of Elkem, Michael Koenig.

Graphite is the leading anode material in lithium-ion battery cells and demand is expected to increase more than ten times from today’s level to 2030. Elkem’s Northern Recharge project aims to take a competitive position in this market, contribute to a strong European battery industry and build new Norwegian export industry based on renewable hydropower.”It is a pleasure to announce that we have selected Herøya Industrial Park as the site for our Northern Recharge project. This enables us to build a highly cost-effective plant with good access to renewable energy, potentially lowering CO2 emissions by 90 percent compared to alternatives based on fossil energy. We also secure close proximity to our pilot plant and internationally leading research environments within material technology,” says vice president for Elkem Battery Materials, Stian Madshus.

Elkem will progress the project towards a planned final investment decision in 2021. A large-scale plant can potentially create new, green industry jobs in Norway as well as positive ripple effects. Elkem will invite industrial and financial partners to participate in the project.

A positive investment decision requires competitive public support mechanisms and supportive government policies. Elkem will present the Northern Recharge project in Oslo today at the launch of the report “Green electrical value chains as an export opportunity” chaired by Arvid Moss, president of The Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise (NHO).

“Elkem’s Northern Recharge project demonstrates the vast potential we have in Norway to take key positions in the battery value chain. However, other countries are also positioning to attract green investments. For Norway to realise our potential, we need to see public-private partnerships, public support mechanisms and supportive policies developing with sufficient speed and scale, enabling us to win in this global competition,” says Moss.

Rechargeable batteries are used in a wide range of applications, from consumer electronics to electric vehicles and battery storage power stations. Graphite, as anode material, typically represents around 10 percent of the battery weight. In addition to the supply of battery materials, Elkem is a supplier of advanced silicone solutions for battery packs, protection of electronics and cable protection.

About Herøya Industrial Park

Herøya Industrial Park is one of the biggest industrial parks in Norway and is situated in the municipality of Porsgrunn in Telemark, 150 km south of Oslo and 170 km east of Kristiansand. With its strategic location on the coast in the far south of Norway, Herøya Industrial Park has fast, efficient links with Europe and the rest of the world. About 80 businesses with approximately 2.500 employees have established themselves at Herøya Industrial Park. They represent a wide range of sizes and sectors – from industrial and maintenance companies with many hundreds of employees to smaller start-ups with just a few employees.

About Elkem

Founded in 1904, Elkem is one of the world’s leading suppliers of silicon-based advanced materials with operations throughout the value chain from quartz to specialty silicones, as well as attractive market positions in specialty ferrosilicon alloys and carbon materials. Elkem is a publicly listed company on the Oslo Stock Exchange (ticker code: ELK) and is headquartered in Oslo. The company has more than 6,700 employees with 31 production sites and an extensive network of sales offices worldwide. In 2019 Elkem had revenues of NOK 22.7 billion.

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