Why is it so hard to recover components from lithium-ion batteries? These batteries are made up of many different parts that can explode if not broken down properly. An expensive procedure, the low value of the products makes recycling cost more than mining the lithium to make new ones. However, there is a point to be noted.
Cheap ways to recycle lithium batteries on a large scale are lagging behind, only about 5 percent of lithium batteries are recycled worldwide – most of them just go to waste. But if the millions of Li-ion batteries that discharge after about 10 years of use are recycled more efficiently, it would help neutralize all that expense.