Battery stewardship

In 2023, the Legislature passed a law creating a product stewardship program for batteries. This new law requires battery producers to create a statewide collection system for portable batteries by Jan. 1, 2027, and for medium format batteries by Jan. 1, 2029. Portable batteries are those found in things such as your phone, laptop, flashlight, and power tools. Medium format batteries are larger and more powerful. An example of where a medium format battery might be used is in mobility devices like electric bikes.

The law requires the battery stewardship organization to submit a plan to Ecology by July 1, 2026, describing how the program will operate, including:

  • Participating producers
  • Transporters, processors, and disposal facilities to be used 
  • How the program will be funded
  • Performance goals 
  • Consumer outreach 
  • Safety procedures

Electric Vehicle (EV) Battery Management Study

The bill also required us to research the management of electric vehicle batteries and provide recommendations to the Legislature via a preliminary legislative report in November 2023, and a final report in April 2024.

We submitted the Electric Vehicle (EV) Battery Management Study Final Report  to the Washington State Legislature in May 2024. The report addresses critical questions related to end-of-life pathways for EV batteries, volume projections, relevant regulations, economic implications, and considerations pertaining to battery chemistry.  Research included a combination of literature reviews, case studies, and stakeholder engagement efforts, including interviews, webinars, and an on-line survey.

Stakeholders identified the following priorities for further action: 

  1. Provide training, education, and resources to first responders, second responders, and automotive recyclers.
  2. Determine who should have financial responsibility and liability for EV batteries.  
  3. Form a Washington State EV Battery Management Task Force with a broad set of stakeholders to address mid- and long-term policy needs.


Work to implement the battery stewardship law is now focused on writing regulations to govern the program. We formally announced rulemaking in March 2024 and the first public meeting to gather input was held in early May. Visit the Battery Stewardship Rulemaking webpage to learn more, and sign up for the email list to receive updates and hear about opportunities for engagement.

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