What is the future for aerosol cans in America?

Aerosol cans account for nearly half of the materials in the US retail sector covered by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. ‘Re-harvesting them can be undertaken in an environmentally protective manner,’ says Scott Fulton, president of the Environmental Law Institute (ELI) which has published a report ‘Considering the Fate of Consumer Aerosol Cans’.

Three-quarters of aerosol containers are made of steel, the rest from aluminium, and ELI calculates that the estimated 3.5 billion steel cans are produced from around 437 500 tons of raw material. If expressed in current prices for recycled steel, this tonnage would have a market value of US$ 131 million. Approximately 30% of this metal is recycled and only 0.25% remains in the recycle stream after five cycles. Read more

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