Why should we use more aluminum if we want to help our environment
Aluminum is a durable metal that plays a key role in modern global infrastructure. This unique metal has amazing chemical properties, making it an ideal choice as a reusable metal. Many industries are already using aluminum as a recyclable metal to help reduce the carbon footprint. Let’s read on to learn more about why using aluminum will help the environment in so many ways.
Amazing chemical properties
Extracted from bauxite, aluminum is a soft metal that has tons of applications due to its unique properties, structure and reuse. Here are the chemical properties that distinguish aluminum from the rest of the metals.
- Aluminum is a light weight metal with a much lower density than steel.
- Durable metal with a strength comparable to steel, when mixed with certain substances.
- Metal is malleable; which means that aluminum can be easily molded into any shape without breaking the material.
- A layer of aluminum oxide develops on the surface which prevents the metal from corroding.
These properties make aluminum a suitable choice for industries such as packaging, beverages and medicine. Recently, aluminum has been advocated for use as an alternative to plastic which helps reduce carbon emissions.
Aluminum vs plastic
These two materials are the most widely used packaging materials in the consumer industry. While the production of both aluminum and plastic emits harmful gases, aluminum is a better option in terms of recycling. Take the example of a plastic bottle. The cap, bottle, and label are all made of various types of plastics that must be sorted before recycling, while aluminum cans containing the same drink are easy to sort and recycle. Since the discovery of plastics, more than 8 billion tonnes have been produced, 75% of which end up filling landfills. Various health organizations like the United Nations have raised concerns about the use of plastics and raised awareness of the disastrous effects it has on our ecosystem and our well-being. There could be some advantages of plastic over aluminum. Still, aluminum is a more durable material that can be an environmentally friendly solution.
Aluminum is the second most abundant metal found in the earth’s crust. Surprisingly, aluminum is also the most durable material in the packaging industry and the only material that benefits the industry by paying its costs. recycling cost, even compared to glass and plastic. These days, leading companies like Ford and Apple recycle their aluminum to save energy and cut costs.
More and more industries are recognizing the advantages of aluminum as a cost-effective and endlessly recyclable material. Industry experts are now more focused and are using tactics such as post-consumer recycling to increase the overall number of aluminum recycling.
An ecological alternative
Besides its reusability, aluminum is also an environmentally friendly alternative for many of the products we use today. Businesses and businesses are coming up with new ways to reduce the amount of waste that ends up in landfills. For example, we all know how many plastic straws end up in the oceans, ultimately disrupting marine life. A healthy alternative can be a reusable straw made from a natural metal like aluminum. Some startups claim to provide aluminum bottled water as an alternative to plastic. Aluminum is also used in the construction industry due to its high durability and low maintenance capabilities. Research statistics show that recycling one tonne of aluminum saves up to 9 tonnes of carbon emissions and produces 95% less greenhouse gases.
Energy saving option
Over 90% of the energy wasted in producing aluminum from bauxite is saved by recycling it. The canning and cookware industries rely heavily on recycled aluminum as the process is more low consumption. Put simply, recycling your favorite soda can end up saving enough energy to keep a TV running for three hours without a hitch. There are several advantages of aluminum that most industries focus on using.
The future of construction
Aluminum has undoubtedly influenced the construction industry due to its strength, low weight and durability; it occupies a key position in sustainable housing. Compared to steel, aluminum is rust free and requires minimal maintenance. The Empire State Building in America replaced its original steel windows with aluminum to prevent rust, icing, and air leakage. High-strength aluminum is widely used in the construction of chassis designs that allow natural light to enter airports and high-rise buildings. New building systems are being designed that use aluminum for better durability, structural stability and functionality.
Aviation and aluminum
Strength, high durability and anti-rust properties make aluminum the first choice for the aviation industry. The aerospace industry also benefits from the advantages of aluminum alloys which can easily withstand extreme fluctuations in temperature and pressure. Tech companies have now revised their manufacturing processes to promote the use of aluminum over plastic and steel. Electronic products requiring cooling now use aluminum-based radiators to dissipate the heat produced and increase their efficiency.
Shipping containers used to transport cargo are made of steel which is prone to corrosion, damage and leakage. On the contrary, the properties of aluminum can significantly reduce the extra weight on freighters, allowing more cargo to be carried, thus saving time, fuel and emissions. Yachts and super boats are all made of aluminum because their weight / strength ratio exceeds many metals. High speed trains now use more aluminum in their components because the material saves fuel and requires minimal maintenance. The automotive industry also uses aluminum to build cars that are fuel efficient, have minimal environmental impacts and are durable.
Aluminum is a material that outperforms many others in terms of ease of use, cost efficiency and strength. Although the use of plastic remains the same, authorities must implement laws that ensure the use of environmentally friendly production methods and encourage people to help recycle materials that only end up in landfill. . Saving our environment requires necessary steps to be taken because we have already disrupted the ozone layer, destroyed billions of trees in the name of urbanization and deteriorated the quality of marine life without even recognizing the damage inflicted.