Extracting vs. Recycling Metal: Which is Better?

Blog | November 26th, 2020

The use of metal for manufacturing different products, devices, and equipment is increasing every year, which is why a lot of industries tend to outsource every metal product that they can obtain and process. But with a refreshed interest in sustainable practices, the argument over the best way of obtaining metal products certainly favours the one that would not negatively affect the environment.

Extracting raw metal materials has been utilised for a long time. Fortunately, technological advances have paved the way for the development of methods that can preserve the properties of scrap metal products. As a result, more and more companies start to prefer metal recycling over metal extractions.

Extracting Metal

Raw metal materials come from the ground. Therefore, they are often extracted from the soil, refined, processed, and then transported to various manufacturers for further processing. The fabrication processes involved with manufacturers would later differ according to the products that they offer. Metal extractions can be beneficial for the economy since the extracted metals can be exported to other countries. They can likewise create jobs for a lot of people and communities.

While metal extractions can be beneficial for the economy, they are deemed to be harmful to the environment. Extracting metal products can easily cause almost all types of pollution due to the by-products of different extraction processes. These processes can also consume a lot of non-renewable energy and produce harmful emissions to the atmosphere and even nearby communities. The overall carbon footprint with metal extractions is significantly huge compared to other metal-related processes. And if metal extraction continues, the natural supply of metals might get depleted after a few years.

Recycling Metal

As previously mentioned, a lot of products today are now made from metals. And if ever these products have deteriorated in value, they are often sent into landfills. This practice just adds to the amount of waste that can contribute to different kinds of pollution.

So, instead of throwing out scrap metal products, sending them to some recycling centres is more ideal. Metal recycling can be beneficial for the economy since more metal products can be produced out of recycling. People can likewise receive money just by sending their scrap metal products to recycling centres. As for the environment, metal recycling can cut off the waste in landfills by a huge percentage. Energy consumption is also reduced since it does not involve various energy-dependent processes and equipment. Raw metal materials are also conserved as the recycling process of metals continues.

The only possible drawback of metal recycling is the presence of factories, trucks, and sorting facilities. These elements can somehow contribute to an increase in the carbon footprint of recycling centres.

While metal extractions can be beneficial for the economy, recycling metal can easily help supply the metal needs of manufacturers without compromising the environment in the long run. To know more about the processes involved in recycling metal, you can call us at Melbourne Metal Recycling.