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Recycling of steel cans as cheap as landfill dumping

By Paul Sanderson

Steel cans can be recycled at zero net cost, according to Corus.

The Anglo-Dutch steel firm

revealed this fact at last weeks Recycling and Waste Management exhibition at the NEC

in Birmingham.

John May, manager of Corus Steel Packaging Recycling, said: Recycling packaging materials from the waste stream is no more expensive than sending them

directly to waste disposal. Calculations show that the savings made in collection and disposal costs offset the costs of kerbside collection, so that steel-can recycling is achieved at zero net cost.

In terms of cost per tonne, the waste collection costs are £32 per tonne (2002 average), the waste disposal costs average at least £30 per tonne and the current value of the steel cans is £55 per tonne net of transport to Corus CanRoute centre.

This means that there is a

total amount of around £117 per

tonne against which the recycling costs can be offset, according

to May.

Corus has also announced its first profit since it was formed in 1999. Surging steel prices have helped the company lift its earnings, as well as cutting jobs and selling off businesses.

Pre-tax profit for the six months to the end of June was £163 million from a loss of £89m a year earlier. Sales rose 11% to £4.48 billion, up from £4.02bn.

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