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Recycling rates of metals - a status report

TitleRecycling rates of metals - a status report
Publication TypeReport
Year of Publication2011
Series EditorGraedel TE, Allwood J, Birat J-P, Reck BK, Sibley SF, Sonnemann G, Buchert M, Hageluecken C
Prepared forA report of the working group on the global metal flows to the International Resource Panel
InstitutionUnited Nations Environment Programme
CityParis / France
AbstractSmarter product designs, support for developing country waste management schemes, and encouraging developed country households not to ‘squirrel away’ old electronic goods in drawers and closets could help boost recycling of metals world-wide. According to this report, recycling rates of metals are in many cases far lower than their potential for reuse. Less than one-third of some 60 metals studied have an end-of-life recycling rate above 50 per cent and 34 elements are below 1 per cent recycling, yet many of them are crucial to clean technologies such as batteries for hybrid cars to the magnets in wind turbines, says the study. “In spite of significant efforts in a number of countries and regions, many metal recycling rates are discouragingly low, and a ‘recycling society’ appears no more than a distant hope,” states the Recycling Rates of Metals: A Status Report, compiled by UNEP’s International Resource Panel.
Graedel_2011_UNEP.pdf2.36 MB
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