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ISRI celebrates year of recycling highlights

United States – ‘In 2011 alone, nearly 135 million metric tons of scrap metal, paper, plastic, glass, textiles, rubber and electronics valued at approximately US$ 100 billion were manufactured into specification-grade commodities by the US scrap recycling industry,’ the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) has reported in its 2012 Scrap Yearbook.

The ISRI publication reveals, for example, that aluminium recovered from purchased scrap amounted to more than 3 million tonnes in the USA during 2011. Of the total volume, 54% came from manufacturing scrap and 46% from discarded aluminium products. Meanwhile, the proportion of used aluminium beverage containers collected for recycling throughout the USA grew from a little over 55% in 2001 to 65% in 2011.

Global demand for aluminium scrap has been ‘rising sharply’ in recent years, ISRI notes. ‘US exports of aluminium scrap – including used beverage containers and remelt scrap ingot – increased 12% by volume last year (2011) to more than 2.1 million metric tons,’ it adds. China accounted for 68% of the export total. ‘By value, US aluminium scrap exports jumped 27% higher to more than US$ 4 billion in 2011,’ ISRI points out, heralding this as ‘a new record’.

Elsewhere, it has been noted that the gross recycling rate for PET containers witnessed an increase from 22% in 2001 to 29% in 2011, based on numbers from the National Association for PET Container Resources (NAPCOR). And US recovered paper export values reached US$ 3.8 billion in 2011, up 14% from the previous year and twice as high as the 2005 total, ISRI also reveals.

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