Brisk new auto sales good for recyclers
Any sign that the economy is improving is welcomed news for all Americans, but the four year growth streak in new auto sales is particularly good news for the recovering automotive industry and for most recyclers. More promising, auto industry experts expect new auto sales to continue to increase over the next few years. True Car, an authoritative automotive pricing and information website, raised its forecast for new U.S. auto sales to reach 16.5 million units for 2014 and 17.2 million for 2015.
This is a leading indicator that more used vehicles have been and will be entering the salvage and scrap markets. Fact is, the primary source of old steel scrap in the U.S. is automobiles. In 2010, the U.S. Geological Survey estimated that 13.5 million tons of ferrous scrap was recycled from automobiles, not including salvaged parts and many other scrap commodities. ...read more
CRT overabundance plaguing e-recyclers
As cathode ray tube (CRT) television displays have been replaced by flat screens using liquid crystal and other technologies, it has become harder for recyclers to find processors for the growing quantities of leaded glass in TVs and computer monitors collected for recycling. Far more of the bulky, old-fashioned TV tubes are being collected than ever before but, since leaded glass is no longer used to make new TVs, there are fewer options for recycling CRTs.
Two recent reports painted the problem with differing degrees of severity. A March survey of recyclers found about 20 percent were having problems dealing with the material. That survey, conducted by the Brattleboro, Vermont-based Northeast Recycling Council for the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), a Washington-based trade group, indicated that recyclers were storing 68,000 tons of CRTs awaiting processing or shipment, but that most, 72 percent, were having no trouble finding downstream vendors. Recyclers that did report problems said pricing was the major issue, and it affected small operators more than big ones.
Less than 10 percent of the recyclers reported being completely unable to find downstream vendors of CRT glass processing in the last 12 months, according to Lynn Rubinstein, executive director of the non-profit council. Only modest volumes of old CRTs were being stored, and this might have been done only to accumulate sufficient quantity for efficient shipping and processing. “I’m not saying this should be ignored,” Rubinstein said. “But are we seeing large volumes of material coming in and being abandoned? If that’s happening, it’s not obvious from the survey results we received.” ...read more