New battery recycling plant comes up in Rusayl

Muscat - 

Be’ah has urged corporate houses to dispose of their lead acid batteries with registered collectors. This they say will help curb threat to human health and environment that results from improper handling of the hazardous waste by scrap dealers.

To recycle batteries, Arab Lead Company (ALC) has set up a plant in Rusayl Industrial Estate. Lead is a heavy metal and one of the most recycled materials in terms of recovery. More than 50 per cent of lead used in the production of new lead products around the world is sourced from recycled lead. “Car and truck batteries, batteries used by telecom firms to operate towers and those used in forklifts by logistic companies can be recycled in the new plant.

The products from these will be lead ingots. They are presently exported. But, we have market for the same in Oman for car manufacturing battery plant.” Be’ah has started registering collectors of lead acid batteries to be a part of this project.

“Due to the rising number of vehicles in the country, the generation of waste lead acid batteries has gone up. These batteries end up in garages, corporate storage areas and a majority of these batteries are exported.” Annually, Oman produces 14,000 tonnes of waste lead acid battery.

“Although it is a hazardous material, because lead is a valuable commodity in the market, the generators usually auction it. The issue with auctioning is most of the time these batteries do not end up in the right hands. Scrap dealers buy, dismantle and extract the lead. In the process, they drain the acid, extract lead and export it. This acid contaminated with lead seeps into the ground and contaminates underground water. Consumption of this water can lead to cancer and even birth deformity in children.

“We have worked closely with ALC to assure that they meet all required standards. We are currently working towards managing the logistics by registering collectors. Proper disposal of lead acid batteries will minimise environment damage and create job opportunities for SMEs,” Be’ah said.

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