Instagrid - impact - Frequently Asked Questions - Instagrid

Your burning questions answered

There are a lot of sticky questions floating around the topic of batteries and sustainability: Are they sustainable across the entire life cycle? Aren’t there many risks along the supply chain?

We have some myths to break – and some valid concerns that need special attention. Here are answers to some of the most frequent questions:

Do batteries have bigger emissions over lifetime than combustion engines?

Do batteries have bigger emissions over lifetime than combustion engines?

We’ve conducted a life cycle assessment according to ISO 14040 and ISO 14044 to get the full picture of the emissions associated with portable batteries, comparing the life cycle emissions of the Instagrid ONE to those of combustion generators. Four life cycle stages were considered: production, transportation, use, and end-of-life. The results show that portable batteries have a significantly lower product carbon footprint than generators. The analysis has been reviewed and certified by TÜV Nord Umwelt GmbH.

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Are the batteries thrown away after they've done their job?

Are the batteries thrown away after they've done their job?

There are several options to choose from when a battery reaches its end-of-life, whether through wear or defect. The three most common options are: a) Extending the initial use-phase (through repair and re-manufacturing) b) Repurposing (also called second-life) c) Recycling The best option is to keep a product in its initial use phase as long as possible so that the duty time of each component is maximised. In a battery product, components are often joined by material-to-material connections (e.g. through welding), making the replacement of relevant parts and components often impossible. At Instagrid, we follow clear design rules (called Sustainable Product Development Guidelines). Modularity is at the core of our design philosophy, allowing us to dismantle the product and facilitate the repair of its components. This also empowers customers to repair minor defects themselves, while major issues are handled by our technical service team.

Thanks to the modular design of our products, it is possible to replace single components instead of replacing entire systems. Additionally, we are launching our Reuse and Recycling Program in 2024 to evaluate second-life options for electronics and battery modules.

It is also the key to provide the best possible design for re-use and recycling.

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Can a battery be properly recycled?

Can a battery be properly recycled?

Today, commercial recycling is mostly limited to physical pre-treatment, followed by a pyrometallurgic process that only recovers a small fraction of the materials. We believe that as a young company, we have a role to play in helping push a recycling transition and partner to find new approaches to commercial recycling of battery cells. To make strides in this area, we have done three things: 1. We participate in national take-back schemes in 23 countries and continuously expand these partnerships. 2. We’ve teamed up with an external partner to assess that 91% of our product can be recycled. We’re looking to better understand which technology is needed to recycle specific components, and which components are critical and subject to disposal.

3. We are establishing partnerships with experts in the recycling field for different components, such as printed circuit board assemblies (PCBAs) and battery cells, to explore innovative recycling strategies.

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How about responsible sourcing?

How about responsible sourcing?

As a young company, we have begun by building trusted relationships with our direct suppliers and working together with them and their sub-suppliers to have a positive impact deeper down the supply chain. We carefully select our suppliers (and request them to do so with their sub-suppliers) according to our self-set sustainability guidelines consisting of environmental and social requirements. We are aware that long supply chains which involve critical materials can be impacted by human rights violations such as modern slavery or child labour in the deeper supply chain. We seek to avoid, prevent, mitigate and end these negative impacts where possible. In 2023, we rolled out an audit programme covering social and environmental criteria. We are mapping our supply chain step-by-step to understand potential risks and impacts in the social context. We are also reaching out to suppliers of critical components to learn more about their due diligence and understand where we can support or join forces. We foster a culture of transparency and open collaboration. Through this, we create opportunities for mutual learning, transparent communication and building trusting and long-lasting relationships. Interested in more information on our supply chain? Dive into our 2023 Impact Report.

What does Instagrid expect of its suppliers and business partners?

What does Instagrid expect of its suppliers and business partners?

At Instagrid, we expect our suppliers and business partners to share our values and conduct ethical business practices. Therefore, have implemented Principles of Responsible Sourcing that are based on Instagrids Code of Conduct. The Principles cover the areas of labour rights, human rights, health and safety and environmental protection and product circularity.

Where can I report a violation of Instagrid’s principles?

Where can I report a violation of Instagrid’s principles?

To maintain transparency and prevent violations of Instagrid's Principles of Responsible Sourcing, we have established a whistleblower system. This system empowers suppliers, business partners and employees to report activities that are considered illegal or unethical.

If you want to access the whistleblower system, click here.