How Recycling Your Car Protects the Environment
Choosing to recycle your car can impact greenhouse gas and help decrease energy. Find out how else it impacts the environment.
- By Phoebe Owen
- Feb 10, 2023
When your car reaches the end of its lifespan, it can be hard to know what to do with it. Fortunately, modern scrapyards make it easy, with many even offering to collect your car from your front door. Registered scrapyards are required to have processes in place to ensure that a certain percentage of each car is recycled, so giving you peace of mind that it’ll be disposed of safely and responsibly.
It’s important to do your part to recycle your car when it’s no longer useful, as leaving it to deteriorate or disposing of it yourself can be detrimental to the environment. Recycling your car instead is beneficial in many ways—we’ve summarized a few of the most compelling ones below.
Less Waste Goes to Landfills
The harmful impacts of landfill sites are no secret, with awareness increasing in recent years due to ongoing climate change. Cars are quite a significant item to dispose of, taking up lots of space if they’re dumped in landfills. By recycling your car instead, you’re helping to reduce the volume of waste in these sites.
When materials are allowed to break down in landfills, they gradually release toxins into our environment. Over time, this waste also releases methane into the atmosphere, which is known to be a harmful greenhouse gas, with one report finding that landfill waste is accountable for around 11 percent of global methane emissions.
Expensive Minerals Can be Reused
When manufacturing a car, precious metals and materials (such as platinum, palladium and gold) are an important part of several integral components. Not only are these materials rare but they’re also difficult to harvest, with the mining processes causing harmful pollution. When a car is recycled, these materials are carefully extracted and can go on to assist in the manufacturing of new vehicles, removing the need for additional mining to take place.
Decreases Energy Consumption used in Production
Manufacturing steel is one of the most energy-intensive processes that go into producing a car. Using recycled steel instead can save up to 74 percent of the power normally used, significantly reducing the impact on the environment. It’s not only steel that can be recycled though, almost every part of a car can go on to serve a new purpose.
When a car is recycled, all of the hazardous chemicals will be professionally extracted from the vehicle. This prevents them from gradually seeping out into the soil, with the parts even being flushed a second time to ensure none is left behind. This makes recycling a much better option than putting it off and leaving your car to rot in your driveway.
Making the Best Choices
With all the recent advances in recycling technology, there’s really no excuse not to recycle your old car. Many scrapyards will even pay you for the value of your car’s parts, so not only are you helping the environment, but you also stand to gain. What may be only a small inconvenience to you can have a huge impact on our planet, so make sure to do the right thing.