25 September 2009

Eco pic of the week

I love this image of aluminium cans labelled as renewable energy, one of Niels Poulsen collection at Ecoscene. Aluminium of course can be recycled many times over. Each time aluminium is recycled, there are environmental gains - energy is saved as it takes much less energy to melt down an existing can, than it takes to quarry and smelt the raw material. Bauxite, the aluminium-containing ore has to be quarried from the ground at great cost. Often this rock occurs in areas of tropical forest, such as in Jamaica, and this leads to more deforestation. Bauxite has to be transported around the world to the smelters where lots of electricity is needed to extract the metal. In Canada, much of that energy comes from HEP but that is not true everywhere.
So next time you drink a can of coke or the like, make sure the empty can, be it aluminium or steel, goes in the recycle bin and not in the dustbin. Such an easy thing to do with great environmental benefit. As they say, very little counts.

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