It’s true what they say: one man’s junk is another man’s treasure. When we see scrap metal, we are more likely to think of it as junk rather than part of the multi-billion dollar industry that it is. But the lucrative, obscure world of recycling scrap metal has more benefits than you think.
How Much Scrap Metal Do We Really Have?
A lot. In the United States alone, about 150 million metric tons of scrap metal are produced every year. Think of automobiles, airplanes, appliances, phones, computers, and the many electrically powered products of our everyday lives. Some estimates indicate that the industry diverts more than 120 million tons of scrap metals from landfills every year, generating more than $90.6 billion in revenue.
Helping the Environment
It may sound obvious to say that recycling scrap metal is good for the environment, so let’s talk about some specific examples.
Extracting ore to produce metal is an extremely resource-intensive process. It requires large amounts of manpower and financial investment. It also releases far greater amounts of greenhouse gases into our atmosphere than the process of recycling metal. The process produces 97% less waste and uses 40% less water than mining and processing virgin ore.
Recycling scrap metal also allows us to preserve limited, naturally-occurring resources that have already been significantly depleted. For example, according to the American Iron and Steel Institute, recycling a ton of steel conserves 2,500 pounds of iron ore, 1,400 pounds of coal, and 120 pounds of limestone.
Finally, metal has the unique privilege of maintaining all of its properties despite repeated recycling. This means that, compared to the production of new metal, there are practically no reasons not to recycle scrap metal.
Boosting the Economy (And Your Own Wallet)
The U.S. scrap industry has nearly half a million employees and creates manifold more jobs than sending the same amount of metal to the incinerator or landfill. The United States also exports about $14.5 billion of scrap metal and their products per year, bringing in huge profits and boosting national GDP.
On a smaller scale, both large and small companies can also reap financial benefits from scrap recycling. They can not only purchase cheaper, recycled metal for manufacturing, but also sell their own scraps to third-party recycling companies like Klein Recycling, and raise their bottom line.
Whether you are a large corporation, small business owner, or a homeowner with scrap metal, don’t lose out on the benefits of scrap metal recycling. Reduce your carbon footprint and maximize your profits today!