Metal Scrap: Steel the Champion of Recycling

Metal Scrap: Steel the Champion of Recycling

Steel is the champion of the recycling world, it is the most recycled material on the planet, more than nearly all other materials combined.  As of 2012 steel retains an extremely high overall recycling rate of 88 percent.

The wonderful metallurgical properties of steel allow it to be recycled continually with no degradation in performance, and from one product to another.

The sources for steel scrap are plentiful, but are classified into three main categories: home scrap, prompt scrap and obsolete scrap.

Home scrap is the scrap that is produced from within the mill itself and is available within weeks. Prompt scrap is scrap that it is produced from manufacturing products from steel, and is available within months. Obsolete scrap is scrap produced from steel products at the end of their lives and it may be decades before this scrap is available (example: The Golden Gate Bridge).

Even while two out of every three tons of new steel are produced from old steel, it is still necessary to continue to use some quantities of virgin materials. This is true because many steel products remain in service as durable goods for decades at a time and demand for steel around the world continues to grow.

Steel is the engine that drives the recycling of many consumer goods as can be seen by the 92.5 percent recycling rate of automobiles, the 90 percent recycling rate of appliances and the 72 percent recycling rate of steel packaging.

For information on how we can help with steel and ferrous metal recycling call us at 216-252-8090 or visit our website at

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