Why is scrap metal recycling on the rise?

The scrap metal recycling industry is the source of thousands of jobs in Canada, employing 40,000 people directly and 120,000 indirectly. And its role in the economy is only expected to grow. Here are three reasons why scrap metal recycling is getting so much attention.

Demand for metal


The importance of metal can hardly be overstated. Take steel. With over 1.5 billion tonnes produced annually, it’s the world’s most important (and most recycled) industrial material. It can be found in nearly every building, bridge and vehicle and makes up 75% of the weight of a typical household appliance. And we can’t forget aluminum, copper, tin, lead and various other metals that we find all around us. Simply put, there’s always a high demand for metal.

Cost savings

To meet this demand for metal, more and more manufacturers are choosing to use recycled metals rather than metal derived from mined ore. Recycled metals match the quality of mined metal while costing less to produce. The discounted price is due to the fact that recycled metal requires a much lower input of energy. For instance, the amount of energy saved using recycled metals as opposed to ore is as high as 92% for aluminum, 90% for copper and 60% for steel.

It’s clearly to manufacturers’ advantage to use recycled metal, but it’s also to businesses’ advantage to recycle it. Since metal recycling facilities pay for scrap metal, recycling it becomes an extra source of revenue (whereas bringing it to the landfill usually incurs charges). It’s a win-win situation.


Metal recycling is also a win for the environment. The process of mining and smelting ore uses a considerable amount of energy, resulting in substantial emissions of greenhouse gases, the primary cause of global warming. Recycling metal, on the other hand, is a much more energy-efficient process that has much lower emissions of greenhouse gases. This eco-friendly aspect of metal recycling is another reason why the industry enjoys such success today. Out of concern for the environment, more consumers and businesses are choosing to recycle their scrap metal and more manufacturers are choosing to use recycled metals in their products.

Scrap metal recycling in Edmonton

If your Edmonton area business wants to benefit by recycling its scrap metal, talk to us at General Recycling Industries Ltd. For convenient bin services in  Edmonton, Sherwood Park and St. Albert, call us today!