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Primary and secondary battery consumption trends in Sweden 1996-2013: Method development and detailed accounting by battery type

Journal article
Authors Joao Patricio
Yuliya Kalmykova
Per E. O. Berg
Leonardo Rosado
Helena Åberg
Published in Waste Management
Volume 39
Issue 5
Pages 236-245
ISSN 0956-053X
Publication year 2015
Published at Department of Food and Nutrition, and Sport Science
Pages 236-245
Language en
Keywords Portable batteries, Recycling, Batteries collection, Integrated batteries, Rechargeable batteries, WEEE, MATERIAL FLOW, SITUATION, ALKALINE, Engineering, Environmental, Environmental Sciences
Subject categories Health Sciences


In this article, a new method based on Material Flow Accounting is proposed to study detailed material flows in battery consumption that can be replicated for other countries. The method uses regularly available statistics on import, industrial production and export of batteries and battery-containing electric and electronic equipment (EEE). To promote method use by other scholars with no access to such data, several empirically results and their trends over time, for different types of batteries occurrence among the EEE types are provided. The information provided by the method can be used to: identify drivers of battery consumption; study the dynamic behavior of battery flows - due to technology development, policies, consumers behavior and infrastructures. The method is exemplified by the study of battery flows in Sweden for years 1996-2013. The batteries were accounted, both in units and weight, as primary and secondary batteries; loose and integrated; by electrochemical composition and share of battery use between different types of EEE. Results show that, despite a fivefold increase in the consumption of rechargeable batteries, they account for only about 14% of total use of portable batteries. Recent increase in digital convergence has resulted in a sharp decline in the consumption of primary batteries, which has now stabilized at a fairly low level. Conversely, the consumption of integrated batteries has increased sharply. In 2013, 61% of the total weight of batteries sold in Sweden was collected, and for the particular case of alkaline manganese dioxide batteries, the value achieved 74%. (c) 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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