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  QUESTION: Thesis on the Material flux analysis of Lead in Sydney, 28 Sep 2005, New South Wales Australia


I am a student from UNSW Civil and Environmental Engineering. I am currently doing a thesis on the material flux analysis of Lead in Sydney. Am trying to develop a model which would present the quantities of lead emitted into the environment. I am also trying to develop a feedback loop on the lead acid batteries generation and its recycling rates. Was wondering if You would happen to have an estimates of Greenhouse gas and CO2 emissions for both lead mining of raw materials and also emissions from recycling Lead acid batteries. Appreciate the help


EMAIL TWO: Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Hi Elizabeth,

Thanks a lot for the links, I have actually found some info on the various energy requirements and emissions from Pasminco environmental report 2000. It would seem that recycling processes requires more energy and releases much more emissions then it would require to mine raw lead. Does that sound about right with ? I also believe that the cost of raw lead is still cheaper than recycled lead at present. Is that true? If so what would be the benefits of improving recycling rates of lead acid batteries?

What i am trying to show in my thesis is that improvements in increasing recycling rates would be helpful to the environment. I am also trying to play around with various variables to see if there is ways to reduce the amount of raw lead required. Any suggestions?

Appreciate your help.

ANSWER: 28 Sep 2005

Dear Darryl,

I guess I don't understand what you mean by asking for information on lead mining for a Thesis on the Material flux analysis of Lead in Sydney (as no lead mining occurs in Sydney), unless you actually mean you are "doing a thesis in Sydney on the Material flux analysis of Lead in Mining and Battery Recycling." Is that what you mean? Theoretically, you should be able to obtain all the estimates you need by searching the National Pollutant Inventory at for all the Australian lead mining companies:

  1. BHP Billiton

  2. Perilya

  3. Xstrata

  4. Nyrstar

  5. Consolidated Broken Hill (CBH)

  6. Magellan Metals - owned by Ivernia West Inc

  7. Kagara Zinc Ltd

  8. Simstar Alloys Pty Ltd Simstar Alloys Pty Ltd operates a lead acid battery recycling business in Laverton, Melbourne. 50% Nyrstar interest, Lead battery recycling operation Nyrstar is the operating partner.

  9. Australian Refined Alloys (ARA) operates a lead acid battery recycling business in Euston Road, Alexandria, NSW. Further to their joint announcement on November 15th 2011, Sims Metal Management Limited and Nyrstar NV announced that, they have now successfully completed the sale of Australian Refined Alloys' secondary lead producing facility in Sydney to companies associated with Renewed Metal Technologies.

The reason I say "theoretically" is because personally, I would not trust the data on NPI - it is mostly estimated by the operator - but it's probably your only source of info (unless the environmental reports of the companies have this data) so there's the dilemma. Good luck. Keep in touch and let me know what you find out.

Yours Sincerely
Elizabeth O'Brien

PS there would be two other sources of estimates for two proposed lead acid battery recycling facilities in NSW which are not yet operational. Is this of any use?

Update 2010: 

  1. Hydromet Lead Acid Battery Recycling Plant at Unanderra in Wollongong, NSW. Web: - Email Address or phone 02 4271 1822.

  2. Renewed Metal Technologies Pty Ltd Lead Acid Battery Recycling Plant at Wagga Wagga, NSW. Web: - Email Address  or phone (02) 6937 1900

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