Assessing Mineral Resources in Society: Metal recycling - Opportunities, Limits, Infrastructure - Factsheet

United Nations Environment Programme ; International Resource Panel (2013)

Due to increasingly complex products metal recycling in the 21st century is becoming a more challenging business. The report of UNEP’s International Resource Panel on “Metal Recycling – Opportunities, Limits, Infrastructure” clearly shows that a Product-Centric approach is necessary to promote high material recovery rates. Based on the holistic view of modern multi-material products this approach aims to maximize, by means of economically viable techniques, metals extraction from the complex interlinkages within. These products – analogous to natural minerals – should be regarded as “designed minerals” and technologies as well as infrastructure from primary metallurgy can be adapted and applied accordingly.