11:32 am - Monday May 28, 2012

Metal Recycling

Metal RecyclingMetal encompasses everything from aluminum foil to clothes hangers, but it can all be recycled in some way. Curbside collection programs often exist for metals like aluminum cans, while other metals have to be taken to a drop-off center that can properly recycle or dispose of the material.

Metal recycling is the process of reusing old metal material, mainly aluminum and steel, to make new products. Recycling old metal products uses 95% less energy than manufacturing it from new materials.

Aluminum is an ore, which is a mineral, and it usually exists by combining with oxygen. To make an aluminum product an electrical current is run through the metal and separates the oxygen from the aluminum. The aluminum is then melted and shaped into various products. Steel is created in a chemical reaction process located in a hot blast furnace. During this process the iron ore is freed from the oxygen and is then used to make steel.

Both of these metal recycling processes consume millions of tons of energy. If we recycle metal products we only have to use 4% of this total energy, which can save our natural resources and reduce our greenhouse gas emissions.

Types of Metal Products

Almost all aluminum and steel products can be recycled over again without compromising its content. Here are some of the main recyclable products:

Aluminum

  • Soda cans
  • Appliances
  • Auto parts
  • Windows
  • Doors

Steel

  • Tin cans
  • Auto parts
  • Bridge parts
  • Appliances
  • Torn-down buildings

Metal recycling is a great way to create new car parts and building structures, both of which help our economy and lifestyles flourish.

Benefits of Metal Recycling

Here are some benefits of recycling aluminum and steel:

  • You can go to scrap metal recycling facilities and get paid for what you bring
  • Reduces greenhouse gas emissions
  • Aluminum and steel can be recycled over and over again
  • Decreases environmental damage caused by mining
  • Less land and water pollution
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