The auto recycling and scrap industries convened in Halifax, Nova Scotia, on June 8-10, 2023, for a mega-meeting of two end-of-life sectors that work together but don’t often sit down and talk about common problems and challenges. The 82nd Annual Convention of the Canadian Association of Recycling Industries (CARI) changed all that. Steve Fletcher, Managing Director at Automotive Recyclers of Canada Association, tells us more.
Dubbed the Winds of Change, the CARI event also co-hosted the national board meeting of the Automotive Recyclers of Canada (ARC), and the regional auto recycling association, the Automotive Recyclers Association of Atlantic Canada (ARAAC).
The two sectors – the upstream auto dismantling group and the downstream scrap processing group not only do business with each other but also operate to a certain extent in those other sectors. Auto dismantlers are increasingly interested in what scrap they can derive from end-of-life vehicles, and many scrap processors are vertically integrating and establishing more direct end-of-life vehicle processing capacity.
While there was business to be had, there was also room for policy and cooperation discussions. Many exhibitors in the trade show benefitted as they are active in both sectors. PMR, Cowan Insurance, Salvage Supply and Technology, ELV Select, Gensco Equipment, Aljon, and Canadian Recyclers Health Benefits were some of the exhibitors who also attended the big OARA Convention & Trade Show for auto recyclers in March.
“Having the two sectors in the same place helped to bridge the gap between the two organizations. Joint sessions, joint receptions, and just meeting buyers and suppliers in the hallways really helped auto dismantlers understand how the downstream scrap sector operates,” said Dalbert Livingstone, ARC Chair and ARAAC Vice-President.
Steve Fletcher, Managing Director of ARC, said:
“I found it particularly productive, even if just from a travel and time away perspective. I got the chance to interact with two organizations that I am either directly involved with (ARC and ARAAC) and one organization that I need to interact with more – CARI, all in one trip to a great destination.”
In the ARAAC Meeting, David Giles from All EV and Jeff Haltrecht from Call2Recycle walked auto recyclers through the profitability potential of EVs and their parts above and beyond just the battery. David’s research and findings were a bright spot in the future world of EVs – there are plenty of profit opportunities for dismantlers, but training, collaboration and market development are key.
Two training sessions were jointly held for all delegates:
1) Fire Safety, EV Management, and ISRI Training on Friday afternoon. Attendees gained valuable insights into ISRI’s training programs and resources, equipping them with essential tools to enhance safety protocols within their organizations. This session highlighted the industry’s commitment to maintaining a safe and responsible working environment.
2) Navigating the Challenges of End-of-Life EVs on Saturday afternoon. Jeff Haltrecht joined Steve Fletcher to shed light on the new challenges, opportunities, policies, and regulations surrounding end-of-life electric vehicles and their batteries. Fletcher presented the Roadmap and Implementation Plan for the Management of EOL EVs in Canada, developed by ARC for Natural Resources Canada. Haltrecht, on the other hand, delved into the entire lifecycle of EV batteries, shared best practices for their management, and put forth policy recommendations. This session gave attendees a comprehensive understanding of the evolving EV landscape and empowered them to navigate the associated complexities.
The convention concluded with a dynamic Town Hall session where CARI, ARC, and ARAAC members came together to discuss common challenges and explore collaborative opportunities. Discussions revolved around material theft, safety concerns, and policy development. This interactive session fostered a sense of community and emphasized the importance of collective efforts in tackling industry-wide issues.
Outcomes from the event will include a joint statement on catalytic converter theft and a pledge to cooperate on the developments related to Electric Vehicles end-of-life management.
“Bringing our groups together gave our associations a great platform to find commonalities and areas where we can collaborate to better serve our members and our industries overall,” said Tracy Shaw, President and CEO of CARI. “We have two vital sectors with strong organizations supporting them, but we are even stronger together.”