While Europe’s scrap recycling industry in general has been hit hard by the coronavirus crisis, surprisingly enough, some in the sector have seen spectacular increase of activity thanks to the pandemic outbreak.
Like in Switzerland, where shredders have been ‘fully booked’ since the lockdown, says Roger Burri of electronics and automotive shredder residue (ASR) recycler Air Mercury.
The explanation for this, according to Burri, lies in the fact that end of life vehicles in Switzerland could not be deregistered for export, and therefore were not allowed to leave the country. In addition, there has been a lack of transboundary transportation capacity.
‘Normally, per year on average out of 300 000 discarded cars in Switzerland 50% is exported. Due to coronavirus measures all car wrecks are now scrapped locally, with shredders working overtime,’ Burri explains to Recycling International. ‘As a result, our company has seen bigger ASR volumes coming in’, he adds.
Cleaning up cellars
Another trend spotted by the entrepreneur: since the pandemic outbreak there is spectacular growth of e-scrap volumes in Switzerland. ‘As probably elsewhere, the Swiss are cleaning up their cellars and premises and decide to finally get rid of devices some of which have been stored there for a long time.’
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