In metallurgical terms, a “non-ferrous” metal — including any alloys — are, by definition, ones that do not contain iron in any significant amount. In fact, the term itself derives directly from the Latin “ferrum,” meaning iron. In particular, the nonferrous metals include copper, aluminum, nickel, lead, tin and zinc as well as several other lesser known ones. In general, these metals do not degrade to any appreciable degree in when melted down and reconstituted. Non-ferrous metals can be processed and recycled an infinite number of times.
In practical terms, it also means that these non-ferrous metals are worth quite a bit of money even after they have served their original purpose. In terms of volume, the non-ferrous scrap metal is fairly small – less than 10% of the overall recycling market – but this relatively small amount also accounts for more than half of the total U.S. scrap recycling industry earnings in 2017. As a old-time miner from the gold fields of California might note, “There’s a lot of money in them there darn scrap piles.” And… he would be correct.
United States – A Big Producer
In the United States, more than 9 million metric tons of non-ferrous scrap is processed every year. The scrap comes from a variety of consumer, commercial, and industrial sources – everything from the copper in automobile batteries through to the metal circuitry in every electronic device you can think of to aluminum siding and airplane parts. Secondary smelters rely on this scrap to provide the industrial market with the bulk of their non-ferrous metal needs — not just in the U.S., but in more than 90 other countries worldwide as well.
The recycling of non-ferrous scrap makes for more environmentally friendly and energy-efficient end products. They simply take less energy and less natural resources to produce. This fact in turn means that the end-user (the consumer) pays less for the product. It is a win-win situation for everyone involved. The gains are most notable in the copper and zinc industries but are also significant when it comes to aluminum and stainless steel recyclers.
Let Us Serve You
ASM Recycling provides timely and efficient industrial recycling services to the the city of Mobile and the surrounding Gulf Coast area. We offer everything from electronic recycling to material processing equipment and we provide convenient pickup services to make everything as easy as possible.
For more information on our recycling capabilities and how we can help your business, please contact us at ASM Recycling. You can find us online at ASMRecycling.com or reach us directly at (251) 470-0765.