Rechargeable batteries

In 1994, Minnesota enacted a rechargeable battery and products law, applying to any sealed nickel-cadmium, sealed lead acid or any other battery that can be recharged.

  • Disposal prohibition. Rechargeable batteries and products with nonremovable rechargeable batteries cannot be disposed as mixed municipal waste. (Minn. Stat. 115A.9157 subd. 2)
  • Collection and management programs. Required the rechargeable battery industry to develop and implement a state-approved collection program as a requirement of selling rechargeable batteries in the Minnesota. (Minn. Stat. 115A.9157 subd. 5)
  • Sales prohibition. Rechargeable batteries and rechargeable products that do not meet the requirements for collection cannot be sold or distributed for sale in Minnesota. This prohibition applies to manufacturers and resellers. (Minn. Stat. 325E.125)


Compliance with Minnesota's laws

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency is in the process of enforcing the terms of state law, working with manufacturers that are not in compliance.


Manufacturers can meet the requirements for collection by becoming a licensee of Call2Recycle, which grew out of an initiative of the rechargeable battery industry in 1994 to meet the requirements of the federal Battery Act (1996). Meeting the terms of the Call2Recycle license has the benefit of satisfying the requirements of state and federal legislation in the United States.

HTML icon Call2Recycle - Licensing

HTML icon Batteries: Mercury-containing and Rechargeable Battery Management Act of 1996 (Battery Act)

This federal law phases out the use of mercury in batteries and provides for the efficient and cost-effective disposal of used batteries, including nickel cadmium (Ni-Cd), used small sealed lead-acid (SSLA) batteries. The statute applies to battery and product manufacturers, waste handlers, and select importers and retailers.

Individual manufacturers: Submit a battery plan and annual reports

Manufacturers with recycling programs that satisfy the requirements in state law must detail the terms of their program.

Your rechargeable battery plan should include the following elements:

Recycling program design

Must be submitted and updated every 5 years. Required elements:

  • Rechargeable battery chemistries you sell into Minnesota.
  • Rechargeable battery chemistries you will recycle.
  • Where collection sites will be set up and how they will be managed.
  • State whether you will work with local units of government if they propose curbside collection.
  • State whether you will provide support for rechargeable battery recycling campaigns and collection drives.
  • State whether you will partner to develop targeted promotions for collection and public awareness.
  • State how your rechargeable batteries will be shipped for recycling and by whom.
  • State how your collected rechargeable batteries will be processed and by whom.
  • If your program is not currently in effect, state when it will begin.

Program promotion. How will you promote your program? Examples: Web site, advertising, retail signage, packaging.

Performance measurement and reporting. Summarize your plan to reasonably achieve a 90% recycling rate of the weight of the rechargeable batteries you place on the market annually in Minnesota.

  • How you will measure performance of your program.
  • How you will calculate the number of rechargeable batteries you supplied into Minnesota’s market in the previous two years and the amount available for collection (state whether a qualified, independent third party will verify these numbers).


A rechargeable battery report is required in each odd-numbered year.

  • Rechargeable batteries collected in Minnesota and recycled (by weight in pounds) for the preceding two years
  • Collection goals for rechargeable batteries of all types (by weight) for each of the next five years.



Binary Data Batteries: Rechargeable batteries and products (115A.9157)
Binary Data Batteries: General and special purpose battery requirements (325E.125)