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Q: Automobiles ( Answered 4 out of 5 stars,   0 Comments )
Subject: Automobiles
Category: Miscellaneous
Asked by: kize7311-ga
List Price: $4.00
Posted: 26 Nov 2006 09:03 PST
Expires: 26 Dec 2006 09:03 PST
Question ID: 785677
I am wondering what is happening to all the automobiles that are
manafactured and sold once their life is over and need to be disposed
of?  I'm assuming that the metal is melted down, and something must be
done with all the accesories such as tires, leather if used on seats
etc...  But are they being recycled at a rate in proportion to the
sales by the new car companies?
Subject: Re: Automobiles
Answered By: answerfinder-ga on 26 Nov 2006 10:35 PST
Rated:4 out of 5 stars
Dear kize7311-ga,

You have not stated which country you are interested in so I have
supplied information mainly from the UK as there is detailed
information to answer your question. I have also a little information
from the US.

This very detailed website from the UK gives information on vehicle
recycling in the UK. Here are some snippets from the page. I recommend
you read it in its entirety as it does refer to the various materials
used in the construction of a car and how they are disposed of.

?Every year, approximately 2 million new vehicles are registered and a
similar number are scrapped.?

?The quantity of used vehicles that are not resold equates to over 2
million tonnes of material to be recovered or disposed of. 1.85
million cars are recycled every year in the UK, and approximately 80%
of waste automotive materials (mainly metal) are recycled, with the
remainder going to landfill.?

?Currently about 98% of the metals in a car are recycled. These metals
are recovered by the vehicle shredding industry and subsequently
utilised by the steel industry and re-smelting plants.?

US Environmental Agency
?With roughly 10.5 million vehicles reaching the end of their useful
lives each year in the United States alone, finding new uses for
materials in cars or trucks that are not readily reusable or
recyclable is a significant challenge.?

?Currently, it is estimated that 75 percent of a vehicle's weight is
being recycled, mostly its metal components?the chassis, engine block,
and radiator, for example. The other 25 percent, known as auto
shredder residue (ASR) or "fluff" contains plastics, rubber, wood,
paper, fabrics, and glass. Each year, about 5 million tons of ASR are
disposed of in landfills.?

More information appears in Chapter 2 of a report on the Automotive
Recycling Industry.

This article discusses how manufacturers are trying to improve the
recycling of cars and car parts.

Finally, the United States Council for Automotive Research (USCAR)
website will show how manufacturers are trying to reduce the amount
that goes into landfills.
"Today, more than 95 percent of all vehicles in the United States go
through a market-driven recycling infrastructure, with no added cost
or tax to consumers. More than 75 percent, by weight, of each
end-of-life vehicle (ELV) is recycled. The CRADA team is working to
raise that percentage to as close to 100 percent as conceivably

I hope this answers your question. If it does not, or the answer is
unclear, then please ask for clarification of this research before
rating the answer. I shall respond to the clarification request as
soon as I receive it.
Thank you

Search strategy
automotive recycling us statistics
cars recycling uk
automobile recycling us landfill

Request for Answer Clarification by kize7311-ga on 01 Dec 2006 06:37 PST
Sorry about being delayed on seing your answer, I was out of town... 
The country I am trying to get a grip on is Mexico and the U.S.A.  I
am aware that recycling cars and their parts is a challange but seing
the amount of new cars that are put on the market each year what
percentage gets put in landfills?  The answer to that is going to be
hard to grasp since I don't have a reference to how much is alot and
how much is a little, so I would rephrase the question in a way to
understand if this is a real problem.  I am in the automotive industry
and we are constantly focused on selling more cars, hence increase our
profit.  Is this viciose cycle going to produce long term disastrouse
challenges for our world?  Thanks

Clarification of Answer by answerfinder-ga on 01 Dec 2006 06:47 PST
Dear kize7311-ga,

Clearly there is a long term problem for the US and the rest of the
world. In the source I referred to above (US Environmental Agency),
each year, about 5 million tons of ASR are disposed of in landfills.
This is clearly not sustainable. There is both an environmental and
financial cost. That is why the motor manufacturers are attempting to
create 100% recyclable products. I believe that I have answered your
orginal question. You may have to go elesewhere for your additional
question as Google Answers is unfortunately no longer accepting new

kize7311-ga rated this answer:4 out of 5 stars
Good answer

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