The European Commission’s anti-trust body has approved 3.2 billion euros in state aid for boosting the European battery industry. The subsidies from seven member states – Germany, France, Belgium, Poland, Sweden, Italy and Finland – will go to 17 companies that are expected to invest an additional 5 billion euros. The money will be used to develop state-of-the-art, sustainable lithium-ion batteries.
The sustainability element isn’t just about environmental concerns, it’s also strategic. The European Commission is currently working on environmental standards for batteries, with requirements for procuring raw materials, environmental cost of production and recyclability. Batteries imported from outside the EU that fail to meet these standards may be banned, Commission vice president Maroš Šefčovič told reporters on Monday.