Surprising Aluminum Facts You Probably Didn’t Know

Aluminum is one of the most abundant metals and because of this factor, the price is much lower than similar materials. Based on simple economic principles, when a price is low, there isn’t much benefit seeking alternative sources of supply.

Applying this principle to aluminum, recycling efforts and results are not where they should be considering that aluminum is the most recyclable of all materials. Even though the price is low for newly produced aluminum, it is still cheaper to reuse aluminum. Let’s take a look at some facts and figures about aluminum to help put this recycling issue into perspective and how important even a little difference can make. At Consolidated Resources, Inc. we strive to provide the businesses we serve with comprehensive solutions because by recycling your business can save money in the long run and help the environment.

Here are some surprising aluminum facts:

  • In 2017, the United States produced 785,000 metric tons and imported just over 5 million metric tons. This enormous dependence on foreign aluminum puts American companies that rely on raw aluminum at a disadvantage when it comes to prices that are dictated by market prices and tariffs.
  • China leads the world in aluminum production with 31 million metric tons produced in 2017. This represents over 50% of the global production of aluminum. The US ranks ninth in the world based on production.
  • Discarded aluminum is the most valuable material in recycling because of the minimal processing required to repurpose it. In aluminum cans alone, Americans throw away nearly $1 billion worth of aluminum every year.
  • With a 67% recycling rate for aluminum cans, the aluminum industry pays out more than $800 million each year for recycled cans.aluminum cans
  • Aluminum can be recycled infinitely, which is why it is so valuable. Other materials may require expensive and lengthy processes to repurpose the materials.
  • Approximately 60 days is the length of time that it takes for aluminum to be recycled and reused.
  • 75% of all aluminum produced in the last 100 years is still in circulation today. This is an amazing percentage but still not good enough considering the value and ease that aluminum can be recycled and reused.
  • Using one ton of recycled aluminum vs. producing raw aluminum saves more than 1,600 gallons of oil. More than 120,000 aluminum cans are recycled in the US every minute. It takes roughly 31 cans to equal one pound (62,000 cans equals 1 ton), so after doing a little math, it only takes about 30 seconds to save 1,600 gallons of oil.
  • However, on average, each American only recycles 2/3 aluminum cans that they use (how 67% was figured).
  • Current aluminum $/lb hovers right around $0.99/lb.
  • The top uses of aluminum in the United States are:
    • Transportation- high strength: weight ratio, alloying with other metals, corrosion resistant
    • Construction- easy to shape, corrosion resistant, thermally efficient, cheaper
    • Electrical- low density for long distances, very ductile, corrosion resistance
    • Consumer goods- electronics, interior design items, beverage containers, kitchen products

Whether your business manufactures car parts or household lamps, aluminum is an important component of a variety of products and these aluminum recycling facts help put things into perspective. We, at Consolidated Resources, Inc., want to help your business save money by providing complete recycling solutions that are custom-tailored to fit your exact needs. We offer everything from custom-built recycling storage to scheduled pickups and we pride ourselves on excellent customer service. To learn more about how we can help your business, visit our services page.

By |2018-11-14T12:51:15+00:00September 28th, 2018|Blog, Recycling Facts|

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