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Ribbon cut on Novelis’ mega recycling centre

Germany – Novelis has officially opened ‘the world’s largest aluminium recycling centre’, capable of processing up to 400 000 tonnes of wide-ranging scrap each year into ingot.

Located next to the company′s rolling mill at Nachterstedt in Germany, the centre represents an investment of Euro 200 million (US$ 258 million) and comprises state-of-the-art technology for aluminium scrap sorting, de-coating, melting and casting. To employ around 200, the centre ′is a significant step toward our goal to be the world′s low-carbon aluminum sheet producer, shifting our business model from a traditional linear approach to an increasingly closed-loop model′, says Novelis’ president and ceo Phil Martens.

Since 2011, Novelis has invested approximately US$ 500 million to expand its recycling network, doubling its recycling capacity to 2.1 million tonnes per year and raising its recycled content from 30% to 46%. The company’s long-stated goal is to achieve 80% recycled content by 2020.

′In an increasingly energy- and carbon-constrained environment, we are convinced it will be a key source of competitive advantage for our company – and for our customers,′ Martens comments. Erwin Mayr, president of Novelis Europe, adds: ′To feed the facility, we are expanding and diversifying our scrap purchasing network to ensure the highest quality scrap is recycled back into the same product whenever possible.′

At the start of September, Novelis announced the opening of two additional aggregation centres in the UK for used aluminium beverage cans as part of a new partnership with European Metal Recycling (EMR). EMR′s site in Erith is serving suppliers in East London, Kent, Surrey and Sussex while its site in Brentford is for suppliers in West and North London and the Home Counties.

Aluminium ingots produced at Nachterstedt will be hot-rolled at Novelis′ facilities in Norf, Germany, and Sierre, Switzerland, and then supplied to company operations across Europe for further processing. Finished coils of aluminium sheet will be delivered to customers primarily in the automotive and beverage can markets.

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