Metal – such as steel and aluminium - is a waste component that can be recycled indefinitely without loosing any of their properties.
Steel and aluminium recycling safe large quantities of energy...
- With a European Union* average consumption of about 11.2 kg per capita, the share of metal packaging amounts to 7 % of total packaging consumption. The predominant part of metal packaging ends up in household/municipal packaging waste. In 1997, the average recycling rate in the EU amounted to 46.0 %.
- Metal makes up more than 7% of US waste - from dog food cans and the linings inside milk cartons to zips on clothing. The US recycles 34% of the steel in its waste stream, and 35% of all metals.
- Recycling aluminium saves 95% of the energy used to make the material from scratch. That means you can make 20 cans out of recycled material with the same energy it takes to make 1 can out of new material.
- If all the aluminium cans in the UK were recycled there would be 14 million fewer full dustbins each year.
- 1 recycled aluminium can saves enough energy to operate a TV for 3 hours.
- Every ton of steel packaging recycled makes the following environmental savings:
|iron ore ||1.5 tonnes|
|coal ||0.5 tonnes|
|water required in production ||40%|
|energy needed to make steel from virgin material ||75%|
|solid waste ||1.28 tonnes|
|reduction of air emissions ||by 86%|
|reduction of water pollution ||by 76%|
*Data refer to EU15.