The benefits of recycling metal are endless for both the economy and environment — mainly because scrap metal can be used, reused, and dispersed again and again. Reusing scrap metal ranges from industry use to home furnishings and even influences the world’s most famous artists.
From soda cans to semi-trucks, each year more than 150 million tons of scrap metal is recycled in the United States alone. But while recycling that empty soup can or scrap from your latest project might not seem like it makes a difference — it does! Read on to learn some of the biggest benefits of recycling scrap metal.
5 Benefits of Recycling Scrap Metal
1. Recycling Scrap Metal Benefits the Environment
Recycling scrap metal by reusing it or selling it for reuse both have positive effects on the economy and environment. When scrap metal is recycled it means there is less scrap metal in landfills and more space for actual waste like food and non-recyclable items. Freeing up space in our landfills means there is less pollution in the environment.
Recycling scrap metal touts numerous advantages, but perhaps the most significant is that it lessens the amount of greenhouse gas emissions. When new metal is produced from mined ore, it releases far greater amounts of greenhouse gas emissions than if recycled metal products were used. Not only do greenhouse gas emissions cause harmful levels of air pollution in cities, but emissions influence climate change — considering 2016 was the warmest year to date, this is a serious issue that should not be taken lightly.
But just how much better is recycled scrap metal when it comes to the environment? The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries estimates that recycling metal may cut greenhouse gas emissions by 300 million to 500 million tons. Moreover, the Northeast Recycling Council reports that with recycled steel alone there is an 86 percent reduction in air pollution, 76 percent reduction in water pollution and 40 percent less water used in the overall process. Using scrap metal instead of virgin ore also generates 97 percent less mining waste as well.
2. Recycling Scrap Metal Conserves Energy
Recycling metal conserves energy that would otherwise be expended in metal manufacturing processes. Different metals require different amounts of energy and resources to be produced but consider this: Recycling steel uses 60 percent less energy than deriving it from raw materials. Recycling aluminum saves 95 percent! That means, if you recycle your can of soda, you can help conserve enough energy to power a 60-watt light bulb for more than four hours!
3. Recycling Scrap Metal Creates More Jobs
According to the National Institute of Health, some of the economic benefits from recycling metal include employing more than a million workers across the U.S. and generating $236 billion on an annual basis. Recycling metal creates 36 times the amount of jobs than sending it to an incinerator and six times more than sending it to a landfill.
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4. Recycling Scrap Metal Can Earn You Money
If you need another incentive for recycling your scrap metals, doing so can make you money. Scrap yards will gladly take aluminum, brass, copper, iron, and steel. As for how much you can earn — it varies. Different metals have different values, and different businesses will offer different cashouts. While potential profit varies, non-ferrous metals are typically worth more than ferrous metals like iron and steel.
5. Recycling Scrap Metals Frees Up Your Space
Scraps of metal consume lots of occupied space in our garages, sheds, yards and the like. Not only is it an eyesore, but it also doesn’t serve much purpose if it is only being stored. Recycling your scrap metal is an environmental duty that will pay off (literally!). Knowing what materials can be sold as scrap, locating the right buyers and obtaining the best prices for your old appliances are all factors to consider when you want to get a return for your good service.
How to Sell Your Scrap Metal
Step 1. Examine common household items. It is easy to overlook certain items that contain valuable metals that can be sold. For instance, Christmas lights contain copper that can be sold as scrap. Toasters also contain copper and have a steel body that can all be recycled into something new instead of tossing it as waste when their mechanics begin to fail. Most appliances are sellable for their scraps, so look for anything in your home with metal and you are on the right track.
Step 2. Know the value of your metal. Knowing what metals you have will pay off at the scrap yard. Certain scrap yards will pay more for specific types of metals than others. You can always call ahead to find out what the price per pound is for your metal to find the highest bidder. The payout prices tend to range from $0.05 – $2.00 per pound.
Step 3. Find the right junkyard. You can visit Energy Star to find the locations near you that recycle scrap metal. This way you will be able to call ahead and find out who’s offering the most for your metals.
Tampa Steel Will Buy Your Scrap Metal
Tampa Steel & Supply supports clean energy and clean air so we are always in need of your scrap metal. We will help make the transaction hassle free while ensuring money in your pocket, and a cleaner environment for Tampa Bay.
If you have scrap metal you want to get rid of in the Tampa Bay area, turn to Tampa Steel & Supply. We offer a variety of products and services and offer cash for scrap metal. Whether you’re looking to recycle your excess metals or need materials and fabrication supplies, we’ve got you covered.