Gregory Maines Featured in Waste Management World Magazine

Share this post

16 May 2024

Lithium-ion batteries are praised for their ability to offer efficient, rechargeable energy solutions. Yet, these batteries pose a significant fire risk when mishandled, especially when improperly disposed of in waste management facilities.

In a recent article for Waste Management World, Jensen Hughes’ Gregory Maines shares his expertise on the hidden dangers of lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries in household waste, along with potential solutions for mitigating the fire hazards posed by their improper disposal.

Waste management facilities are generally ill-equipped to handle the unique hazards of Li-ion batteries. If improperly discarded into waste streams, various waste management processes can lead to these batteries catching fire, triggering the ignition of surrounding waste piles and leading to a fire that can quickly grow out of control.

"Material recovery facilities appear to be the most heavily affected, in part due to a widespread mistaken belief among consumers that lithium-ion batteries are recyclable as part of typical household collection programs and the additional processing steps that occur at these facilities,“ noted Gregory. “The most effective form of risk mitigation is eliminating the hazard.”

Addressing these hazards requires a multifaceted approach, including automatic detection devices to prevent the spread of fire as well as improved processes, technologies, and products to reduce the likelihood of improper disposal and collection.

Read the article “The Hidden Danger: Li-ion Batteries as Fire Hazards in Waste Management Facilities.”

Headshot of Gregory Maines

About the author

Gregory Maines