Reduce, reuse and recycle are the three R’s of sustainability. The steel industry has this covered!
“Scrap” is the term used to describe recycled steel. There are three major sources of scrap: home scrap, prompt scrap and obsolete scrap. Home scrap is produced by the steel mill during production. Prompt scrap is produced in the actual manufacturing of steel products like I-beams, channel, angles and plates. Obsolete scrap comes from steel products at the end of their lives – think automobiles.
Steel is the most recycled material on the earth. Steel can be recycled over and over again without any loss of strength or quality. Other recyclables, such as plastics, pose a potential threat to the environment in the recycling process. During the plastic recycling process, VOCs or volatile organic compounds, fumes are released. These fumes can actually harm nearby plant and animal life. The recovery rate on all plastics in the United States is only about 9% according to the most recent Municipal Solid Waste report from the EPA. Steel, on the other hand, has a much higher recovery rate. The recovery rate for structural steel is around 97% worldwide. Scrap is remelted and used to make new steel. Environmentally, this reuse has a huge impact on the reduction of CO2 emissions and consequently lessens the industry’s impact on climate change.
Ritner Steel Inc. is proud to be in an industry that honors the earth.