JB Straubel sits down with CNBC’s Phil LeBeau at Redwood Materials.
Redwood Materials, the battery and e-waste recycling startup founded by former You’re here Chief Technology Officer JB Straubel announced Tuesday that it has closed a $1 billion funding round to expand its operations in the United States.
The company collects used batteries from electric vehicles, breaks them down and uses their metals – including nickel, copper, cobalt and lithium – to produce new components that can go into batteries for electric vehicles.
One of Redwood’s primary goals is to produce battery components domestically to reduce some of the global business and geopolitical risks associated with the electric vehicle industry. Redwood also aims to use as many recycled materials as possible to reduce the environmental impact of the automotive industry’s transition from internal combustion vehicles to battery electric and hybrid vehicles.
While Redwood initially focused on recycling, the company is also engaging in refining and remanufacturing, and adding what it calls sustainably mined materials into its products when necessary, Straubel told CNBC. earlier this year.
As CNBC previously reported, earlier this year Redwood secured a $2 billion loan from the US Department of Energy. The company plans to use its funding to expand operations in the United States, including within and beyond its base in Carson City, Nevada, and has announced plans to build a battery materials campus in outside of Charleston, South Carolina.
U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm has identified domestic production of batteries and components as a way to meet growing demand for electric vehicles, generate jobs, and accelerate the transition from fossil fuels to renewable and clean energies.
Fossil fuels are the dominant form of energy used in the world today and are responsible for the majority of human-made emissions of CO2 and other toxic air and particulate pollutants that are driving climate change and its effects, including more frequent and extreme weather events.
According to the Energy Information Administration, despite the growing share of electric vehicles on the road, gasoline, excluding fuel ethanol, still accounted for 52% of the total energy consumption of the U.S. transportation sector in 2022.
Battery manufacturing capacity in North America is expected to reach nearly 1,000 gigawatt hours per year by 2030, according to a study by Argonne National Laboratory.
For its new growth funding round, Goldman Sachs Asset Management, Capricorn’s Technology Impact Fund and other anonymous funds advised by T. Rowe Price Associates led the operation, according to a company statement. The Series D equity financing round brings Redwood’s total capital raised to nearly $2 billion. OMERS, heavy equipment maker Caterpillar Inc., Microsoft’s Climate Innovation Fund and Deepwater Asset Management also invested in the round.