Power and Motion recently completed a storage rack de-installation project in Georgia consisting of 2 million pounds of ferrous steel. The steel racking system was over 20 years old and well past its useful life as pallet racking in the existing industrial distribution facility.
Our company would typically design, manufacture, and install a storage rack system. In this case, we were hired to remove the storage rack and recycle the used steel. For this project we used 12 employees, several fork trucks, scissor lifts, and countless metal cutting tools to remove the entire steel structure.
Our trucking company provided over 60, 30,000# trucks to haul the racking system from the distribution facility to our recycling center. The storage racking was then shredded, sent to processing and on to its new life in the form of fresh steel.
There are several good reasons to recycle steel.
Recycling steel prevents the need to mine additional iron and coal, the primary ingredients to make new steel.
Producing new steel from virgin materials requires more non-renewable energy than steel made from recycled steel.
Because steel is a metal, it can be easily separated from other recyclables (e.g. paper, glass) using magnets.
Steel is the building material of choice for most construction projects because of its strength and durability.
Steel recycling saves landfill space as well as provides a scrap resource to the steel industry.
Steel is a key component of car parts and household appliances, and recycled steel has the same strength as new steel when used in these devices.
Unlike other materials (e.g. paper, glass), steel does not need to be separated by color or size before it is recycled; it can all be melted down at once.
In one year, American steel recycling saves enough energy to heat and light 18 million homes.
One pound of recycled steel saves enough energy to light a 60 watt bulb for 24 hours.
Scrap steel provides the largest source of raw material for the entire steel industry.