With climate change becoming more of a hot topic, people are seeking out different ways to limit their negative impact on the environment. From people taking their electronics to proper receptacles to creative DIYers turning spent lightbulbs into candles, the general population is looking for new ways to help the world around them. All of that is fine for recycling small items, but what about the larger items that people get rid of on a daily basis? For example, if you’ve ever junked a car, you might be left wondering what happens to it and if there was a better way to dispose of it that creates less waste.
In some cases, disposed vehicles are left sitting in landfills where they decay and negatively impact the surrounding environment. This is the case in Bermuda. Cars are lined up in a landfill where they decompose in the elements and pollute the ocean around it.
“This is an appalling situation and it is setting a terrible image,” Greg Wilcox, president of Kansas City, Missouri’s Midway Auto Parts, said. “We need to recognize that we have to start doing something now that will be sustainable for the future.”
Luckily for Bermuda and the world at large, there is a way to dispose of an old vehicle while still helping the environment; recycle the car.
While the concept has been around for a while, there still seems to be a large number of the population who don’t know that they can recycle their vehicle. The advantages of doing so also remain unknown.
There are immediate benefits from recycling cars including:
- the reuse of steel from vehicle frames
- the proper disposal of fluids like oil and gasoline
- the reduction in greenhouse gases produced from manufacturing steel
By reusing the large amounts of steel from a car, manufacturers don’t have to go through the harmful process of refining iron ore using coal to create steel. This reduces the greenhouse gases created during the process. This also helps save limestone since the mineral needs to be destroyed when mining for coal. With the coal being unnecessary here, the limestone doesn’t have to be disturbed. In general, recycling steel uses less energy (about 74%) than the energy it takes to produce steel from scratch.
All of the fluids from the junked vehicles will be properly disposed of instead of seeping into the ground and ultimately affecting groundwater and the surrounding population. These fluids include oil, gasolines, anti-freeze, and even mercury. These fluids have to be properly discarded in order to eliminate the chance of environmental contamination.
When recycling a vehicle, people are surprised with how much of the car can be repurposed as they stand. Salvage yards will sift through left over parts in order to fix them up and resell them at discounted prices. This is possible because the majority of accidents that render a vehicle useless don’t destroy other parts of the car. Since the salvage yards will ultimately be making money by repurposing the harvested parts, they’re willing to pay people for their vehicles. This in turn benefits you, the owner, while keeping harmful materials out of landfills.
There are other ways that can benefit you and environment at the same time. There are manufacturer buyback programs. Most vehicle manufacturing companies will offer to buy back your old vehicle when it gets close to its end. They may offer you money for the car or, if it is in bad shape, they will offer to tow it, dismantle it, and recycle it for free. If your manufacturer doesn’t offer this, there are independent companies that will buy your old car for cash. These businesses are becoming so popular that quick internet search will help you find one.
There are also charities available where they’ll help you recycle your vehicle. In these instances, the money you’d get from a buyback program would go to a designated charity and the vehicle will be completely repurposed. Here, you’ll usually have an opportunity to get a tax break by making a charitable donation, too.
For those who are interested in helping out their local community while still helping the environment, there are city organizations that allow you to recycle your vehicle in a way that will keep the reusable resources within your community. They will usually pay you for your vehicle or will allow you to write it off on your taxes. Similarly, you can research local scrap companies that can help you repurpose your vehicle in a way that benefits your surrounding area. Doing this will also allow you to support a local business.
So, how can you recycle your car? You’ll want to start by researching cash for cars companies in your area. Once you get in contact with a preferred company you can reach out to them usually by phone or email. Most companies will give you a free, no obligation quote for your car. You’ll most likely need to provide them with the make, model, and year of your vehicle as well as the mileage. If you think that the quote is fair, you can then bring your car in if the cash for cars company doesn’t offer a pick-up service.
These are only a handful of reasons why choosing to recycle your vehicle is better than simply junking it in the old fashioned way. You’ll be doing your part to better the environment while potentially putting cash back into your pocket. If you’re considering recycling your car in the near future, be sure to research your local companies and your local environmental laws in order to do it the right way.