The amount of plastics used to manufacture North American vehicles has increased from an average of 51 kg per vehicle in 1970 to an average of just over 120 kg in 1989. These increases, as well as anticipated additional growth, together with the steadily declining quantity of ferrous metals, will create an increasingly acute cost crunch for the scrap car recycling industry. In this paper we present data and projections on the quantities and composition of the plastics content of past and future automobiles, estimate the amounts that will appear at auto recycling facilities of the future, and discuss possible recycling and disposal alternatives. Based on these, we conclude that for the near term, the most fruitful areas for research on recycling of automotive plastics are likely to be at the original plastics manufacturing facilities (waste minimization and prompt scrap recycling) and at the scrap dealer yards (labeling and sorting methods for large body parts). For automobile shredder wastes, pyrolysis and incineration appear to be the most reasonable short term alternatives to minimize disposal requirements. (A)

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  • Corporate Authors:

    Elsevier Science Publishers

    Crown House, Linton Road
    Barking, Essex IG11 8JU,   England 
  • Authors:
    • Braslaw, J
    • Labana, S S
    • Killgoar, P C
  • Publication Date: 1990


  • English

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00606885
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Transport and Road Research Laboratory (TRRL)
  • Files: ITRD, TRIS
  • Created Date: Mar 31 1991 12:00AM