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(110,444 posts)
Tue Jun 11, 2024, 02:36 PM Jun 11

As the need for copper rises, cable manufacturers recycle more

MONTREAL (AP) — In an industrial suburb of Montreal, sheets of copper move along a conveyor belt suspended four stories above the floor of a foundry — a metals plant — until they drop into a lava-hot furnace. Next come pieces of discarded copper wire.

Out of the furnace comes liquid copper, alight with green fire. It travels to a second furnace and from there, a river of orange copper flows out, to be shaped into copper rods, the raw material for copper wire.

This Nexans mill has made copper rod from ore for nearly a century. But now it also makes an increasing amount of it from used copper, with the rods containing some 14% recycled metal. It hopes to get to 20%.

“We say to our customers: Your waste of today, your scrap of today is your energy of tomorrow, so bring back your scrap,” said Nexans CEO Christopher Guérin.


I was in the telecommunications business for 40+ years. We always recycled our copper.

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As the need for copper rises, cable manufacturers recycle more (Original Post) Yo_Mama_Been_Loggin Jun 11 OP
Telcos happen to be sitting on a gold mine of buried copper wire HAB911 Jun 11 #1
What "need" for copper? hunter Jun 12 #2


(9,116 posts)
1. Telcos happen to be sitting on a gold mine of buried copper wire
Tue Jun 11, 2024, 03:42 PM
Jun 11

British circular economy company TXO recently provided an enticing estimate of the potential value of copper wires owned by telecom companies if properly recycled and reused. Over the next 10 years, TXO stated, telcos could "harvest" 800,000 metric tons of copper wires. At today's prices, this material could be worth more than $7 billion, and its value continues to increase.

More than a dozen companies are now exploring how to extract this metallic treasure from old, increasingly obsolete telephone networks to resell the recycled cables on the open market. TXO highlights that copper wires aren't as essential as they once were, as fiber optics technology, which offers significantly better reliability and data transfer capabilities, is replacing the old metal.

Recycling old materials to build new devices is becoming a paramount concept in the technology industry, and copper is extremely valuable for today's applications, including solar panels and batteries. According to a 2022 report from S&P Global, demand for copper could double by 2035, increasing from 25 million metric tons to 50 million.



(38,569 posts)
2. What "need" for copper?
Wed Jun 12, 2024, 12:43 PM
Jun 12

We don't "need" electric cars, vast solar projects, or wind turbines. We don't need excess copper wiring or copper plumbing in the homes of wealthy people.

When do we say, "Enough!"

Could it be that we've already mined enough copper?

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