Urban Mining of E-Waste is Becoming More Cost-Effective Than Virgin Mining

 

Professor John Mathews, Xianlai Zeng and Jinhui Li have just had an article on China’s urban mining of e-waste published in Environmental Science & Technology.  In this work, they demonstrate utilizing real cost data from e-waste processors in China that ingots of pure copper and gold could be recovered from e-waste streams at costs that are comparable to those encountered in virgin mining of ores. Their results indicate a trend and potential if applied across a broader range of e-waste sources and metals extracted. If these results can be extended to other metals and countries, they promise to have positive impact on waste disposal and mining activities globally, as the circular economy comes to displace linear economic pathways.

 

Read the article in Environmental Science & Technology at https://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/acs.est.7b04909.

 

Click HERE to print or download the PDF.

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