The Importance Of Copper Recycling Even If Large Deposits Can Still Be Found

Posted on: 13 November 2020

Shortages of copper sometimes occur, leading to an increase in copper prices and a worry that we could run out of copper. This seems to be baseless speculation, but recycling companies still encourage people to bring their scrap copper in for cash. Industries pay less for recycled copper because mining and refining ore costs more. 

Expert Insight

According to the Copper Alliance, global reserves should last 46 more years. Although that number sounds small, it only includes deposits that have already been discovered and judged as potentially profitable. Resources include all copper deposits on the planet, including those that have not even been discovered yet.

Problems With Mining

The problem isn't so much a lack of copper deposits, but one of competing interests and inadequate technology.

For instance, environmental regulations regarding mining have become increasingly strict over the years. Stricter laws make it very difficult and costly for mining corporations to extract metal while following the guidelines. Strategies for preventing pollution can be particularly expensive when the mine would be situated near important natural resources. Rivers, lakes, and other waterways are examples.

Legal issues can block mining efforts for years. Environmental organizations can successfully delay new mines with political lobbying and appeals to the public. In some cases, an organization with competing interests buys the land with copper reserves. That might be a Native American tribe wanting to protect this land, for example. 

In addition, not all copper deposits are accessible at this time because they cannot be reached through existing mining techniques. Also, certain resource areas may be too inefficient for the desired profitability. Extracting small amounts of metal requires the same type of effort, generating waste material that the company must manage appropriately to protect the environment.

For all of these reasons, recycling companies encourage area residents to bring their scrap copper in for a cash payment.

Getting Started

By doing a little online research, people can find out where they might have scrap copper around the home and not even realize it. Insulated wiring for electronics and old landline phone cords and cables contain this metal. Some small and large appliances, particularly older ones, may contain copper. If any nonfunctional motors and pumps are still around the household, they could be brought in as well. Making a list of possibilities and checking through the home, basement, attic, and garage may turn up other sources that recycling facilities pay for.

Talk to a recycling company, such as ABC Svinga Brothers, Corp, to get more information.