The emergence and dominance of lithium-ion batteries in expanding markets such as consumer electronics, electric vehicles, and renewable energy storage are driving enormous interests and investments in the battery sector. The explosively growing demand is generating a huge number of spent lithium-ion batteries, thereby urging the development of cost-effective and environmentally sustainable recycling technologies to manage end-of-life batteries. Currently, the recycling of end-of-life batteries is still in its infancy, with many fundamental and technological hurdles to overcome. Here, the authors provide an overview of the current state of battery recycling by outlining and evaluating the incentives, key issues, and recycling strategies. The authors highlight a direct recycling strategy through discussion of its benefits, processes, and challenges. Perspectives on the future energy and environmental science of this important field is also discussed with respect to a new concept introduced as the Battery Identity Global Passport (BIGP).