News, Trends & Reports from the Automotive Recyclers Association

May 1, 2023 | Industry

Professional Automotive Recycler Sean Krause Nominated to Join Executive Committee of Automotive Recyclers Association

The Automotive Recyclers Association (ARA) announced that professional automotive recycler Sean Krause of Speedway Auto, Ltd. in Joliet, Illinois has been nominated to join the Association Executive Committee as Secretary for 2023-2024. Krause is the CEO of Speedway Auto, Ltd. alongside his father, Paul, who established the business in 1969 with his wife, Indra.

Sean Krause of Speedway Auto, Ltd. in Joliet, Illinois has been nominated to join the Executive Committee as Secretary for 2023-2024.

“We have been a member of ARA since 1972 and I am honored to join the Executive Committee,” said Krause. “I look forward to giving back and contributing value, but I still have a lot to learn and re-learn. My strengths are helping people connect in this industry and I plan to use that to focus on certification and how important it is to be ‘Gold Seal,’ not only for accolades, but for the safety of all our employees, too.”

“Sean has been in auto recycling for 32 years,” said Marty Hollingshead, Immediate Past President and chairman of ARA’s Nominating Committee. “In addition to that, Sean is a hardworking, hands-on guy and he is concerned with what is best for the industry. He will do a great job and will be a great addition to an already great team.”

Sean’s parents came from England to build the American Dream. His father saw an advertisement in the Chicago Tribune for a salvage yard and house for sale, and bought it in the same year that Sean was born. In 1991, Sean joined the family business after college and his first task was to attend an ARA Annual Convention in Chicago. He never imagined how interesting used auto parts were and the many possibilities of recycling automotive parts.

For more than 20 years, Sean has served on the Board of Auto Truck Recyclers of Illinois (ATRI), including as President, and he currently sits on the ARA Board of Directors. He is very active in his local community. He and his wife of 25 years, Coleen, have three children – Max (21), Cameron (18) and Sophia (13). Krause will be formally confirmed by the ARA Board of Directors and Membership during the ARA’s 80th Annual Convention and Exposition.

Reminder – Open Safety Recall Portal on ARA Website

This is a friendly reminder about the open safety recall portal available to you as an ARA Member.

We know that identifying any recalled part is of the utmost importance to your business. Please encourage your sales employees to utilize the open safety recall portal as part of your quality control process, particularly prior to selling any recycled nondeployed OEM airbag. It is always a good idea to regularly audit your part listings and check for new recalls. eBay Motors now requires all sellers of airbags or airbag-related components on their platform to be an ARA Certified Automotive Recycler with a Recall Procedure in place. Refer to ARA Certification standards for Recalls at https://aracertification.com/recalls to establish a recall policy at your facility.

Please log in to the Member-Only Area of the ARA website to access the safety recall portal: https://web.a-r-a.org/Portal/portallogin.aspx?ReturnURL=%2fportal. For help with your login, please contact Kelly Badillo (Kelly@a-r-a.org) or Kaitlyn Gatti (kaitlyn@a-r-a.org).

ARA Makes a Presentation to Government, Academia, and Industry at Argonne National Laboratory Electric Vehicle Battery Recycling Event

In April, Emil Nusbaum, ARA’s VP of Government and Regulatory Affairs, gave a presentation entitled Replicating the Automotive Industry’s Successes in its Transition to Electrification at the ReCell Industry Collaboration Meeting held at the Argonne National Laboratory. In attendance were members of government, academia, and industry stakeholders who are involved in the reuse, repurposing, and recycling of electric vehicle batteries. The ReCell Center’s mission is to grow a sustainable advanced battery recycling industry by developing economic and

environmentally sound recycling processes that can be adopted by industry for lithium-ion and future battery chemistries. This year’s industry collaboration meeting was the first industry collaboration meeting to take place since before the COVID-19 pandemic.

Emil’s presentation highlighted the need to replicate and build upon the existing successes in the automotive industry that have provided the United States with enormous economic and social benefits. Over the last century, the automotive industry has been a primary driver of the U.S. economy by creating millions of jobs and allowing vehicles to become durable commercial commodities with long service lives. The fact that vehicles have become durable commodities with long service lives has allowed for the democratization of transportation within the U.S. Democratization of transportation has developed because vehicles are affordable to repair, affordable to insure, affordable to finance, and that a single vehicle can serve multiple owners across diverse socioeconomic backgrounds throughout its service life. This has allowed for affordable access to vehicles and transportation. As the industry transitions to electric vehicles, the successes of the internal combustion engine vehicle must be replicated while reducing pollution in an economically viable manner.

The key to duplicating past and current successes in the automotive industry is predictability. Users throughout the entire value chain of a vehicle must have a clear understanding as to the quality, performance, and remaining service life of a vehicle. Unlike internal combustion engine vehicles, it is challenging to determine the condition of an electric vehicle because a majority of the value of an electric vehicle is in the battery pack. Therefore, the key to predictability for electric vehicles is the testing of electric vehicle battery packs throughout the service life of a vehicle. The information required in testing will depend upon the needs of the entity in possession of the vehicle. For example, an automotive recycler will need battery information that will allow an automotive recycler to put a battery to its highest and best use.

A successful transition to electrification requires that electric vehicle batteries be put to their highest and best use when they arrive at an automotive recycling facility. Automotive recyclers have mastered putting end-of-life/total loss motor vehicles to their highest and best use over the last century. This has resulted in substantial economic, social, and environmental benefits to the U.S. by maximizing existing resources. As part of its work in promoting the highest and best use of end-of-life/total loss electric vehicles, ARA has been promoting a highest and best use hierarchy. A successful transition to electric vehicles will require electric vehicle batteries arriving at automotive recycling facilities to be: (1) reused as originally intended and unmodified; (2) repaired or reconditioned for original reuse; (3) repurposed for secondary applications; (4) recovered for raw materials for manufacturing; and (5) disposal. Applying the highest and best use hierarchy to electric vehicles is necessary because it will allow for affordable and accessible transportation in the U.S.

Putting electric vehicle batteries to their highest and best use will allow for a vibrant recycled parts market, extended vehicle service life, lower insurance premiums, and reduced carbon emissions.

WELCOME NEW AND RETURNING MEMBERS

C & R Auto Parts and Collision, LLC

Cash For Your Junk Car

Central Florida Pick and Pay

Crown Auto Salvage, Inc.

Donut Auto Parts

Green Gardens Auto Parts

JDM Shop USA, Inc.

Johnson Auto Salvage

Natchez Salvage & Parts, Inc.

River Valley Auto Parts

Sanford Auto Salvage

Staunton Wrecking

ARA Advocates for the PART ACT

In May, the Automotive Recyclers Association (ARA), along with twenty organizations, sent a letter to the United States Congress urging the passage of the Preventing Auto Recycling Theft Act (PART Act) and federal legislation to combat catalytic converter theft. Other organizations ARA is working with on the issue of catalytic converter theft who also signed the letter were the National Automobile Dealers Association, Major Cities Chiefs Association, National Insurance Crime Bureau, National Consumers League, and American Property Casualty Insurance Association, American Car Rental Association, and the NAFA Fleet Management Association. Over the last two years, ARA has been working with legislators, regulators, law enforcement, industry stakeholders, and state affiliates on providing effective solutions to deter catalytic converter theft. Professional automotive recyclers have been primary targets for catalytic converter theft groups because automotive recyclers are the largest collective owners of total loss/end-of-life motor vehicles. Automotive recyclers are some of the most impacted victims of catalytic converter theft for the following reasons: (1) catalytic converter thieves are endangering employees of automotive recyclers; (2) criminal groups are breaking into automotive recycling facilities to steal catalytic converters; (3) automotive recyclers are valuating vehicles and paying for vehicles with the expectation that catalytic converters will be on the vehicle – only to discover they are missing upon acquisition; (4) the sheer volume of catalytic converters being stolen is contributing to lower prices paid for legitimately obtained catalytic converters. Automotive recyclers do not generally purchase detached catalytic converters but purchase entire vehicles with the catalytic converters still attached.

The letter sent to the United States Congress urging passage of the Preventing Auto Recycling Theft Act (PART Act) and federal legislation to combat catalytic converter theft.

ARA Partners with WPI to Study Industry’s Environmental Benefits

ARA has partnered with Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI), located in Worcester, Massachusetts, to undertake a nationwide study that will illustrate the industry’s

significant environmental benefits. Specifically, the research study will develop greenhouse gas emissions information and quantify the carbon footprint reduction that utilization of

ROE–Recycled Original Equipment® parts has compared to utilization of new automotive parts.

The nationwide study builds upon the groundbreaking findings of a 2017 study by WPI of professional automotive recyclers located in the state of Massachusetts. WPI will investigate greenhouse gas emissions information and related carbon footprint reduction for ten specific parts of three vehicles: a sedan, an SUV, and a pick-up truck. Results of the study are expected at the end of 2023.

Do You Have Interchange Insights to Share?

ARA’s Interchange Committee has been working with the inventory management systems to identify the best method for capturing recycler-to-recycler part interchangeability information that doesn’t necessarily meet the criteria for traditional interchange information. For example, part modification or fitment information based on recyclers experiences.

A Subcommittee has been established to collect and verify this type of peer feedback. The goal is to help recyclers make more sales outside of what is provided by interchange. Once information has been reviewed and verified, Checkmate and Hollander have agreed to incorporate this user feedback into their systems. Car-Part has also agreed to put this user feedback information on their website.

To submit your interchange information, please send the following information to: ARAPI@a-r-a.org.

1. Interchange Numbers

2. User Notes (Please provide a description of what changes need to be made for this part to become interchangeable)

3. Your Contact Info

4. Photos (not required but greatly appreciated)

5. OEM Part Number (not required but greatly appreciated)

The Interchange Committee also has a template for submitting interchange action requests so as to include as much information as possible in the initial request. Email staff@a-r-a.org for the submission template.

ARA Leaders Present at the CARS and MRE Event

ARA President, Shan Lathem, along with Second Vice President, Eric Wilbert, were in Stoneleigh Park, Coventry, United Kingdom at the end of May to present at the Complete Auto Recycling Show and Metals Recycling Event 2023. The gathering is one of Europe’s largest events for the vehicle recycling, dismantling, and metals recycling industries.

Lathem and Wilbert enjoyed meeting with ARA members in attendance as well as business owners from across Europe. They participated in a session titled “Recycling Around the World” and gave a United States perspective on the market for recycled parts and factors impacting ARA member businesses. Their presentation covered opportunities and challenges facing auto recyclers as well as what ARA is doing as an Association to prepare member businesses for the future.

ARA Hosts General Motors Sustainability Group

In April, ARA hosted a group of 25 employees from General Motor’s Sustainability Group for a tour of Highway Auto Parts in Roseville, MI, and OmniSource in Jackson, MI. The Sustainability Group is comprised of engineers and designers who work together to develop ways to design and build vehicles that are more sustainable and create less waste at the end of their life. This was the second time ARA has facilitated tours for the Group.

ARA Director of Member Relations Vince Edivan along with Slater Shroyer, ARA Governmental Affairs Committee Chair and Owner of Shroyer Auto Parts in Lansing, MI, were able to attend along with Immediate Past President Marty Hollingshead and Past President Jonathan Morrow. Dan McDonald, Commercial Manager for OmniSource, led the tour and started the day off with a safety briefing and asked what GM wanted to gain from the visit. There were about 25 GM employees present and most were interested in knowing how they can design better for reuse.

A lot of the conversation was focused on the automotive shredder residue that is created after a vehicle is shredded. ARA pointed out that for as much time, money and energy that go into engineering, designing, and building vehicle seats, that particular part unfortunately has a very low sale percentage and most of them get shredded – and they are almost all ASR. Airbags and electronics were brought up as other examples. Hollingshead stressed that with regards to batteries, automotive recyclers need to be able to assess the battery state of health.  

Overall the meeting was very positive and all agreed that automakers and auto recyclers need to be supply chain partners rather than competitors. A special thanks to Highway Auto Parts and OmniSource for their hospitality!

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