In case you’re not aware, metal recycling has helped in reducing environmental pollution by almost 86 per cent and water pollution by almost 76 per cent. However, the benefits of metal recycling run much deeper than that. For instance, metal manufacturers carrying out lean manufacturing methods can easily obtain tax benefits by utilising recycled metal instead of newly produced metal from ores. Moreover, the cost of a metal-made product will also be substantially reduced by using recycled metal rather than utilising new metal ores.
Therefore, in this comprehensive guide, we’ll discuss the impact of metal recycling in Sydney on the earth’s environment and how it can contribute to energy & resource savings in the long run.
What Do You Mean By Metal Recycling?
Metal recycling can be defined as the process of aggregating and melting metal parts, which have reached the end of their lifecycle. As a result, these melted metals can then be reused as the ideal raw materials for the manufacturing of new products.
In this recycling process, any type of metal from any item will be included. For instance, the procedure will include items such as:
- Copper cable wires
- Household appliances
- Food packaging
- Electronic devices
- Building infrastructure parts (that are made of metal) and so on
The Various Types Of Recyclable Metals
As the list of recyclable metals can be lengthy, it’s better to segregate the types of metals into two different categories:
- Non-ferrous metals
- Ferrous metals
Ferrous metals are those metal compounds that contain iron. On the other hand, non-ferrous metals are those which don’t have iron content in them. Some of the popular metals are as follows (both from the ferrous & non-ferrous category):
All of the aforementioned metals provide great value even when they’re recycled, especially copper.
The Environmental Merits Of Metal Recycling
Most people are unaware that when we tend to throw out metal products, the price is ultimately paid by the environment and it indirectly affects human beings in the long term.
When metal is dumped into the environment, there’s a major risk of exposing the environment to the very rawest form of metals. And since metals take multiple years or even decades to be broken down by weathering agents of the environment, the negative effects will be long-lasting. Some of the toxic metal compounds that are released via environmental metal degradation are:
All of the above-mentioned toxic metals will directly or indirectly contaminate water bodies, plants, animals and soil.
However, recycling metal parts and not directly dumping them into the environment can eliminate all of these issues.
The Energy Conservation Aspect Of Metal Recycling
Besides the environmental aspect of metal recycling, there’s the energy conservation aspect as well. For example, the energy saved by recycling one regular sheet of aluminium (instead of manufacturing new aluminium) will be enough to power a light bulb for more than 20 hours and a computer for more than three hours.
But, the bad news is that – according to recent statistics – only 35 per cent of all aluminium metal is recycled. This means a lot of energy is being wasted making new aluminium, which could have been avoided by recycling.