Scrap metal recycling guide: A way to sustainable development

Recycling | 24 min Read
scrap metal recycling guide

The need for efficient resource management and sustainable production models are more vital than ever before as the irreversible damage point to ourselves and the Earth is closer than ever. To meet this requirement, we need a perspective focusing on the cycle, which will enable us to see the root cause of the crises and give us the keys to real change. To look out for a circular format, perception and elements of management system in businesses should also change. For this, we need inter-company collaboration and a view that considers utility maximization as well as profit. Namely, a macro-scale circular economy based on recyclable and reusable products.

The new models that move forward with developments such as the European Green Deal and Sustainable Development Goals, with the motto “Greener together,” also concern the future of waste disposal and management, especially the future of recycling business. Now, new models are designed for recycling every material, especially production materials such as plastic, glass, chemicals, and metal, which are heavily consumed and pose potential health risks with the pollution they create.

Looking at these studies, we see that the raw material with the highest recycling potential is metal. Is recycling of metals a viable alternative of metal extraction really? Yes! Unlike plastic and glass, the recycling rate and potential of metals are quite high, and the gains obtained with the recycling of scrap metal are also significant. So, why is it good to recycle scrap metal?

scrap metal recycling

How does recycling metals help sustain the environment?


To understand the scrap metal recycling market and its importance for sustainability, we must first answer this question: What is scrap metal recycling?


What is the importance of scrap metal?

Scrap metal are waste metals like vehicle parts or building leftovers that can be recycled for new products. Accordingly, scrap metal recycling is based on recovering metals from end-of-life products and their reprocessing and repeated use as raw material. Being able to be reused over and over without any degradation makes the scrap metal recycling industry a vital pillar of a sustainable economy by reducing carbon emissions and efficient use of resources.

Steel is the only major material capable of meeting the demands of a macro-scale circular economy because 85-90% of the steel products are already recycled. After all, it’s hard to see how resources can be used more efficiently than scrap metals, with almost everything running on a take-waste model!


Scrap metal recycling and the three pillars of sustainability

Sustainable actions take shape on the three intercycle pillars: Environmental, economic, and social. Of course, scrap metal recycling services also fulfil these essential sustainability components. Let’s see together how.

  • Economic: As environmental sustainability in business has become necessary, companies have started to give importance to recycling. It offers hundreds of new job opportunities from the local level to the international scale. Moreover, they are green jobs, making the economy and production models eco-friendly.

Also, one of the areas most affected by the pandemic was steel production, and steel prices continue to increase. Unfortunately, prices are expected to remain high following years. Because the infrastructure required for the transition to the green economy also requires a lot of steel! Hence, we can pass to the green economy with green and cost-effective methods.

  • Social: As stated, the recycling industry continues to open green employment areas day by day. In this context, it guides societies on sustainable production and consumption habits. Consequently, as metal recycling grows, every individual will benefit socioeconomically from it.

The transition to a green and circular economy can be rooted in the transformation from society. Awareness and common practices of recycling are the most important pillars. Scrap metal recycling industry trends encourage the active participation of individuals in the process both because metal is in everyone’s life.

  • Environmental: The scrap metal business and scrap metal recycling market are already providing substantial environmental benefits. Managers guide metal recycling with the principle of natural resource and energy conservation. Thanks to reusable metals, accumulation in landfills is prevented, and metals that take decades to disappear in nature create a new resource instead of pollution.

For example, a single ton of reused steel saves 2,500 pounds of iron ore, 1,400 pounds of coal, and 120 pounds of limestone. We haven’t even added the destruction of nature caused by mining activities, the intense use of energy and fossil fuels, and the carbon emission rates! In addition, landfill emissions can also be minimized by recycling, and a precious natural resource can be used for much more valuable work.

The importance of scrap recycling is evident for a sustainable future, but how can metal be recycled? What happens to scrap metal at recycling centers and before?

steel recycling guide


Techniques of recycling metals


Scrap metal goes through a careful collection and sorting process before it arrives at metal recycling places. But, what types of scrap metal can be recycled?

Although all metals, except for containing toxic substances, can be recycled, those with the highest recycling rate are ferrous ones -like carbon steel- and non-ferrous metals, namely copper and aluminum. So where are all these metals collected, and where to recycle metal? What are the stages of scrap metal processing? Let’s explain!

  • Collection: The first step is to collect anything that contains recyclable metal. You can see companies working in this field or separate metal collection bins. But the most common method would be a scrap metal recycling yard, aka wrecking yard or junkyard. The scrap metal recycling yard is where waste metals are collected and mediated for the sale of scrap recyclers. If you’re wondering the kind of metal scrap yards take, don’t worry! The type doesn’t matter as long as you take a lot of metal waste. Also, if you intend to start a scrap metal recycling business, begin planning to open a metal scrapyard!
  • Sorting: Sorting is the first step in recycling centers in which the recyclability rate of metals is determined, and quality control is carried out. For this, metals are separated from other wastes in the stream. But how do you separate scrap metal? For example, metal parts in cables are stripped and separated from plastics. Then they have separated again according to their types and purity.
  • Processing: The next step of the scrap management system is to squeeze, shred, or compact the waste. Because scrap metals need to shrink again and take up less space to approach their original condition.
  • Melting: This is one of the steps you need to be most careful with because each metal needs to be melted in a different furnace since all of them have different properties and require diverse temperatures. Still, it is easier than mining!
  • Purification: Thanks to methods such as electrolysis, no contaminants are left, and the highest quality is tried to be achieved.
  • Solidifying: Now it’s turn for the melted and highest quality metals to cool down so they can be shaped into the form desired by the customers. The scrap metals transferred to the conveyor belt are left for cooling where they solidify. They are then shaped according to demand to be used as raw material again.
  • Transportation: This is the final step for scrap metal recycling facilities. Scrap metals are packaged according to their size and shape and sent to factories to construct new products.

The high potential of scrap metals would be lost without an efficient scrap metal recycling business plan and optimized practices. Therefore, the most urgent need of the global scrap metal recycling market is a modern waste management system that will provide a seamless process flow from scrap yards to metal recycling facilities, namely, Evreka!

scrap metal collection


The most efficient scrap metal recycling software


Evreka was founded by a team that understands the importance of waste management for a cleaner, greener, and livable world. Thus, its digital and sustainable waste management solutions have spread to more than 20 countries in a short time. Still, Evreka Crew deals with every detail from smart waste collection to route optimization and also pays special attention to recycling and Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR).

Hence, if you did not find what you are looking for the scrap yard management system and scrap metal recycling software, or an answer for how to start scrap metal recycling business, you are in the right place! How would you like to review the Evreka products that will be most useful to your business?


Fleet Management

Suppose you have agreed with companies, individuals, or public institutions to collect scrap metal. Maybe, you have trouble following the path of the waste going from the scrap yard to the metal recycling facilities and from there to the factories. This module combines wonderfully with Evreka’s hardware solutions and lets you know everything in vehicles. Also, it promises route optimization, efficient fuel use, time, and cost savings. But how?

  • With fleet tracking map, managers can see all the data related to vehicles instantly.
  • Managers can see and compare everything about a vehicle or a trip by viewing historical data.
  • Managers can view data on all vehicles in the fleet on one screen and develop strategies for savings and efficient performance.
  • It also contributes to core functions such as inventory and maintenance management.
  • Thanks to route and fuel optimization, it helps you reduce carbon emissions.


Operation Management

How about taking a look at Operation Management that Evreka offers, which allows you to manage almost everything from Asset Management to Finance Management together? Thanks to this module, managers can:

  • Reduce the administrative workload and time.
  • Control all the necessary data on a single dashboard and plan the changes immediately.
  • Orchestrate each participant involved in the operations from citizens to employees.
  • Design the right strategies by using reporting features and mobile app.

Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) Management

MRFs are facilities where all recyclable materials are collected, sorted, and prepared for recycling. Evreka’s all solutions control and regulate the demands, stocks, and prices in these facilities, as well as data analysis and management thanks to the specially designed MRF Management. This way:

  • Managers can maximize inbound and outbound control with a mobile app by eliminating trackability problems.
  • Managers can handle machinery, employees, and equipment by streamlining the work order and reducing maintenance costs.
  • Particular actions are obtained according to different materials, assets, and other resources.

If you are interested in the scrap metal business and want to be a part of the green economy and sustainable development, meet Evreka’s digital waste management world. Request a demo today and learn all about the intelligent Evreka solutions!

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