Quiz by: elodiesale
Every day Americans go through more than a million pounds of aluminium. But for much of this mega material it won’t be its first time around.
David Hensley : “It’s so recyclable. About 2/3 of the aluminium that has ever been made is still in existence.”
While it may take a lot of power to make aluminium, once aluminum oxide is stripped of its oxygen atoms metallic aluminium is incredibly stable. That means it can be melted down and re-use again and again, forever.
Kenneth Teasley : “ aluminium is like a pig : nothing goes to waste. Everything is recycled.”
Recycled cans went up in a place like this, Enheuzer bush recycling corp in Hayward, california.
Ray Martinez : “There are about 6,000 pounds in there. We are gonna open these doors, cans are just gonna fall out. After we've dumped all this, I will get my guy Robin. We'll just push these cans up, push them on the conveyor.”
Every loose scrap of paper , piece of steel or plastic, anything that is not aluminium needs to be removed.
Ray Martinez: “ We try to do the best inspections we can, so we ship this to the mills, and get the best loads out that we can”
After inspection, the loose cans fall into the crusher, where a massive hydraulic press crunches them into bales that are perfectly square. Then they’re shipped off to the smelter.
Trevor Hanson: “They’re gonna be melted down, and made into new aluminium can sheet.
And here is a staggering fact to ponder with friends over a beer, in less than three months, an aluminium can circulates once through its life cycle.
Trevor Hanson: “That can can go all the way through that close loop system and be back in your refrigerator sixty to ninety days later filled with a new beverage."
All while using much less energy.
In Australia, smelters alone consume ten percent of the nation's total power. So by recycling, you cut the demand for electricity and that reduces greenhouse gas emissions. Recycling an aluminium can saves about ninety five percent of the energy required to make a can out of virgin materials.
- to recycle : /ˌriːˈsaɪkl/ recycler
- to strip of : /strɪp/ dépouiller
- loose scrap : /luːs/ /skræp/ ferraille en vrac
- Aluminum (USA) : /əˈlu.mə.nəm/ Aluminium
- Aluminium(GB spelling) /æl.jəˈmɪn.i.əm/ Aluminium
- Mill : /mil/ Moulin
- Staggering : /stӕɡəring/ Stupéfiant