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New battery recycling facility gets positive and negative reviews


ENDICOTT (WBNG) — New York’s Empire State Development is funding a new $1.75 million lithium-ion battery recycling facility on the Huron campus, which sits where IBM once did.

“Projects already 83 jobs, it projects $50 thousand payroll,” said Endicott Mayor John Bertoni (D).

SungEel MCC Americas (SMCC) is receiving the money. SMCC is a partnership between South Korean recycling company SungEel HiTech, and White Plains-based e-recycler and broker, Metallica Commodities Corp.

“Not only is it safe, it’s also the most environmentally way to do it,” said COO of Metallica Commodities Corp., Danish Mir.

However some aren’t as positive on this battery operation, and feel the village has left them out of this conversation.

Joann Loffler who lives across the street from the Huron campus told 12 News, “They don’t care about residents, it does contaminate.”

“You’re always going to get somebody who asks, “What about this? What about that? Rest assured that’s going to be taken care of,” explained Bertoni.

With the facility not expected to move in until next year, Loffler told 12 News that at night she smells weird odors coming from the facilities.

“I’m not going to close my eyes to it and neither is anybody else,” said Bertoni. “You know people have concerns about the environment.”

As 12 News has reported in the past, the state classifies the former IBM grounds as superfund site, meaning the land is contaminatied.

“We’re not just going to be a dumping ground here,” said Bertoni.

Mir, who will run the new recycling facility, says no waste will leave the site to go in the air or the river. He added that 95% of the lithium ion battery is recycled through the process.

“Now we’ll have a site, which will not only complement the development of the product, but also the idea that you can bring it back and it will be recycled,” explned Bertoni. “Its been a good week for Endicott with the Great Binghamton Fund and now this.”

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