Many people don’t consider the amount of garbage they produce or what happens to it after it’s collected. Most garbage ends up in landfills, where it is “buried”. The landfills are overflowing and quickly running out. Recycling has emerged as a viable alternative to incineration, especially in the past decade.
There’s a lot of media exposure for plastic, paper, glass, aluminium and other materials, which leads to a high-level consumer understanding. It’s not the case with scrap copper in Sydney. Copper can be found in electrical cables, plumbing pipes and automotive waste. Recycled copper makes up almost half of the copper demand worldwide.
Copper recycling offers many environmental benefits in addition to its economic benefits. Recycling copper reduces the need to mine, process, and refine it. This alone reduces many harmful environmental effects. The copper that is being recycled does not go to the landfill, which is an unsustainable alternative for disposing of waste materials.
Copper recycling is “energy-saving”. This process uses only 10% of the energy required to extract pure copper ore. Less energy is required to extract virgin copper ore from oil, gas, and coal. This reduces carbon dioxide that is emitted into our atmosphere. It also makes recycling more attractive than mining.
Copper products are more affordable when recycled than mined. It’s much cheaper to recycle copper than mine. Cost-wise, recycled copper can be worth nearly 90% of the original copper. There isn’t much that’s not made of copper today for the average consumer – from cell phones to computers to flat-screen television sets to computers.
Copper is extremely valuable in the production of consumer products. Recycling waste is therefore even more important. Copper is the most electrically efficient non-precious metal, and it is used in almost every electronic product. It is a shame that so much copper ends up in landfills – this is a sign of modern consumerism and wasteful society.
Waste electronics and electrical equipment are a major threat to the environment. This is because so many waste items are discarded, and so many end up in landfills. In the coming years, there will be serious consequences for the environment from releases of mercury and cadmium. It can all be recycled.
Product manufacturers have been increasingly focusing on sustainable product design in recent years. This means using more recycled metals like copper and generating less waste in the future. The environmental landscape is slowly changing around the globe as governments establish more progressive rules for waste and recycling.
A proactive approach for the environment is important for every consumer, especially when it comes to the basics: Reduce – Re-use – Recycle.