The automotive industry centers focus on development and production and less on what happens at the end of a vehicles life span. The end is something that everyone in the automotive industry should take note of, as there are an estimated 15 million cars and trucks that are scrapped every year in the U.S.
Recycling vehicle parts is not just good for the environment, it can lower the production costs of future cars and trucks.
Each vehicle produces about 500 pounds of shredded scrap, which largely consists of foams, plastics and other materials that can be recycled. In effort to make cars lighter, more fuel efficient and cheaper to own, automakers have turned to plastics. Plastics, along with most of a vehicles interior and exterior components, account for approximately 80% of a vehicle that can be recycled.
Materials that are recovered from cars can be reused to make new automotive parts and also assist in the research and development of next-generation lightweight cars and trucks. Recycled automotive parts can have many lives. Below is an example of how the 110 million+ tires are processed each year, according to the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, Inc.