20 Interesting Facts About Recycling Metal

Interesting Facts About Recycling Metal

interesting facts about recycling

Fun facts about metal recycling that will surprise and amaze you! From ancient Egyptian copper plumbing to the amount of steel your average city bus contains, we explore the wonders of metal and the marvels of recycling it.

Copper

  • For nearly 5,000 years, copper was the only metal known to man.
  • It was first used by humans more than 10,000 years ago. A copper pendant discovered in what is now northern Iraq has been dated about 8700 B.C.
  • Copper’s recycling rate is higher than that of any other engineering metal. In fact, it is possible that we could still be using the same metal in our pennies and electrical wiring that was used by the pharaohs in ancient Egyptian plumbing. Whoa!
  • Copper’s recycling value is so great that premium-grade scrap normally has at least 95% of the value of the primary metal from newly mined ore.
  • Copper is used to make the alloys, brass and bronze.

Source: Copper Development Association Inc.

Aluminium

  • Recycling one aluminium can saves enough energy to run a TV for three hours.
  • An aluminium can that is thrown away will still be a can 500 years from now.
  • There is no limit to the amount of times aluminum cans be recycled.
  • At one time, aluminum was more valuable than gold!
  • Aluminium is the most common metallic element on earth, making up about 8% of the earth’s crust.

Source: Time to Recycle, Planet Ark

Steel

  • An average city bus contains 75,000 cans worth of steel.
  • In Australia, steel makes up about 2.5 per cent of the waste that goes to landfill.
  • Making new steel from recycled cans uses 75 percent less energy than making steel from raw materials.
  • 21% of all steel consumed in Australia is used in engineering construction.
  • The average Australian consumes 6 kilograms worth of steel drink cans annually.

Source: Waste Authority, Clean Up Australia

Lead

  • More than 98 percent of all battery lead is recycled, compared to 58% of aluminum soft drink and beer cans, 63% of paper, 41% of glass bottles and 85% of tires.
  • Lead-acid batteries top the list of the most highly recycled consumer product.
  • Lead has one of the highest recycling rates in the world, higher even than better known recycled items such as glass or newspaper.
  • Lead can be recycled indefinitely without any reduction in quality.
  • In 2013, global secondary (i.e. recycled) lead production accounted for 54% of total lead production.

Source: Doe Run, International Lead Association

 

Interested in recycling your scrap metal? Contact Metal Biz today to find out how you could turn your scrap metal into cash!