Saving energy, cutting greenhouse gas emissions and natural resources

The impact recycling has on the environment, as well as UK’s economy is substantial. The Earth’s resources are not a cornucopia of unlimited possibilities, so proper conservation can only benefit everyone in the long run. Thankfully, the recycling process allows us to reuse most of the Earth’s resources, so it’s definitely an important solution that should be more widespread.

Environmental Benefits & Saving Energy

Recycling also helps conserve energy. The amount of energy required for recycling scrap is much smaller than the amount required for excavation of raw materials. Conservation of energy directly translates to conservation of monetary resources, and is thus a key aspect of sustainable development.
Recycling a tonne of steel saves 1.5 tonnes of iron ore and reduces CO2 emissions by 80%.
Recycling a tonne of aluminium saves 9 tonnes of C02 emissions and 4 tonnes of bauxite – the raw material from which aluminium is made.
Recycling cans saves up to 95% of the energy it takes to make both aluminium and steel from raw materials.
Making aluminum cans from recycled metal is 20 times more energy efficient than using 'primary' metal.
Recycling seven cans saves enough energy to power a 60-watt light bulb for 26 hours.
Each household uses approximately 600 food tins 380 drink cans per year. Recycling one can saves enough energy to power a computer for one hour or power a television for 3 hours.
Source: Metal Matters (
Recycling metal conserves natural resources by reducing greenhouse gas emissions and using less energy than making new metal from virgin ore. The production of new metal releases a larger amount of greenhouses gases compared with making products from metal which is recycled.The emissions from creating new metal sources influence climate change as well as cause harmful levels of air pollution, resulting in health problems for many people.
The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries says that recycling metal could cut greenhouse gases by 300 million to 500 million tons. Not only this but using scrap metal instead generated 97% less mining waste and 40% less water.

Economic Benefits

Recycling scrap metal helps benefit the UK economy mainly because it mitigates the need to extract non-renewable resources through mining. Though we may not be conscious of it on a daily basis, the Earth’s supplies are finite, so it’s best to avoid digging up materials when we still have scrap that we can reuse.The UK produces a great amount of scrap metal on a daily basis. Using all of it only once can greatly increase the necessity for boat and rail transport, which not only raises the likelihood of pollution, but also costs much more than recycling old scrap metal does.