Car recycling must improve, warns report

26 November 2007

  • 75% recycling of car parts is not enough
  • Too many car parts end up in landfill sites
  • EU legislation is already tackling problem

car crash

Manufacturers must find better ways to recycle cars if the industry is to be sustainable, according to a new report.

A project by Oxford Brookes University predicts that more cars will be built in the next 25 years than in the entire history of cars, as a result of demand in emerging economies such as Russia, India and China.

It predicts that 3.5 billion tonnes of scrap will be produced in the next 20 years as a result of this increase in car use.

At present, about 75% of the scrap from old cars is recycled, while the remaining parts usually end up in landfill sites.

Report author Professor Allan Hutchinson said: 'Recycling is not a concern for the distant future – it is with us now. How to dispose of vehicles more effectively may not be glamorous, but it may ultimately be the most important part of a sustainable motor industry.'

The report is urging car makers to find new materials in pace of plastics, rubber, glass and fabric that can be recycled.

European Union legislation is already in place to force car makers to build cars of 95% recyclable materials by 2015.

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