Schnitzer’s recycling yards and shredding facilities perform this fundamental role. Our principal priority is to identify customers for the metal we process — and thereby enable these materials to be reused. Precise sortation technology is key to achieving this goal.
Installed technology upgrades allow us to extract approximately
of additional insulated copper wire per month
Schnitzer’s recycling facilities collect both ferrous metals and non-ferrous metals. Ferrous metal makes up the majority of the scrap we receive. We process these metals by shearing, torching, baling, and ultimately sending them through shredders, which break down materials more efficiently than manual processing and yield an end product that is denser and more suitable for use by steel mills.
Non-ferrous metals include stainless steel, aluminum, copper, brass, and zinc, which can also be recycled into new products. In the past, we sold mixed packages of these materials, which we exported for further sortation. Today, as customers demand more defined packages of metals, Schnitzer is adding enhanced separation capabilities to our non-ferrous metal recovery plants, also referred to as joint product plants (JPP). These new capabilities allow us to increase the quality and purity of our product mix, extract a greater volume of non-ferrous material to sell, and reduce the material that we dispose. And, because these higher-quality products can be sold directly to smelters, we eliminate a processing and transportation step and those associated emissions.