Q&A with Shawn Sauer (Chairman, Canadian Energy & Power Corp.)
What inspired Canadian Energy to join the coalition?
Canadian Energy is committed to the responsible management of batteries today and into the future. We have an innate responsibility to participate in any and all efforts, programs or organizations that will broaden the awareness of responsible battery management and disposal.
Describe your company’s current efforts toward responsible lifecycle management of batteries (regardless of technology):
Battery recycling is extremely important to the environment and to our industry. These products have a history of ending up in oceans, waterways and landfills. So we make sure we do everything we can to educate our customers that Canadian Energy is the ideal place to dispose of batteries safely and properly. Batteries are worth the time and money to our customers to bring in to a regulated battery recycling facility like Canadian Energy, but more important, it ensures we strive to leave this planet better than we found it.
How do you hope to contribute to RBC’s mission?
We are starting our own program in Canada called The Great Canadian Battery Drive (GCBD). The program is targeted toward schools, organizations, nonprofits and teams to have them rethink their traditional forms of fundraising. Instead of car washes, bake sales, bottle drives and donations to afford their uniforms, event funds, travel costs, etc., we are marketing the concept that they consider the GCBD as an alternative. The digital and traditional marketing messaging will communicate two key points. The first targets their desire for something fresh and different that requires less work than their traditional forms of fundraising: for every automotive battery they recycle with Canadian Energy, they would need to collect over 96 beer bottles or 40 wine bottles to match.
The second message targets people’s general desire to be a part of a social movement that is bigger than themselves: we communicate that we’ve created a process to make recycling batteries simple, safe and profitable and at the same time, ensuring our forests, rivers and oceans become cleaner and greener.
Twenty years from now, what would be your ideal scenario for battery manufacturing and recycling?
We would like to continue to be a thought leader and raise awareness to educate our users of the benefits of battery recycling through our marketing and sales efforts. That means promoting the fact that a battery’s lead is worth the time to return due to the core refund a user receives. We must continue to think progressively and responsibly about how our batteries are recycled. Nearly 99 million wet-cell lead-acid car batteries are manufactured each year, and programs like the RBC keep heavy metals out of landfills and the air.