Copper recycling in Europe:
End-of-Life Vehicles (ELVs)
Copper is 100% recyclable and can be reused multiple times without losing its intrinsic physical and chemical properties. Recycling depends on many factors, ranging from:
- Consumers’ responsibility in returning discarded or obsolete products
- Consistent reporting of waste streams
- Products’ lifespan and their subsequent decommissioning
- Overall efficiency of the waste management system
From all copper produced globally, around 8% is used in vehicles. The same applies in Europe, and is expected to exponentially grow due to the electrification of the mobility and transport sector.
ELVs make up around 7% of the total EU End-of-Life copper in waste. Along with other metals in ELVs, copper recycling offers a great opportunity for value retention in the EU. ELV recycling efficiencies primarily occur at collection, separation and shredding stages.