Fiber drums and recycles are a key part of our economy.
The average cost of a fiber drum is about $2.50 per cubic meter, according to a 2015 report by the U.S. Department of Energy.
But the cost of those materials has dropped by up to 80% over the past few years.
And that has resulted in a drop in the price of the items that go into them, according the American Sustainable Fiber Association.
And while the drop in cost may seem modest, it’s the main driver of a rapid increase in the use of recycled materials.
“We see the decline of the use [of recyclible materials] because of the price reduction,” said Greg Tannenbaum, a senior policy analyst with the nonprofit.
“That’s why it’s such a great thing for people.”
One example of a reusable fiber drum that’s been saving people money is a new fiber drum made from a type of aluminum used in fiber optics and solar cell manufacturing.
A recycled aluminum can be used to make more reusable fiber drums, which are used in consumer products, but the cost has dropped as well.
“The cost is now about $1.50 to $2 per cubic metre,” Tanneng said.
The American Sustainable Recycling Association, which has been tracking the decline in the cost and the use a new model that can account for more than 1,000 recycled materials, says there’s a lot more fiber than the current recyclers can handle.
“I don’t know how many years ago they could have handled the whole amount of fiber,” Tannon said.
“But now, I don’t even know how they can handle it.
It’s a disaster.”
A new model makes recycling more cost-effective For the first time, the American Solar Council has made the recycling industry more efficient by using a new recycling model that incorporates the cost savings of a different type of material.
Called the “cost-plus” model, the new method uses a new type of recycling that is a combination of recycled material and other recyclably available materials that can be combined to make the products more cost effective.
The new model includes the costs of materials that are more expensive than the raw material used in the recycling process and then converts those costs into a lower cost, or “cost per unit of output,” or COVID-19-like cost.
“These new materials are less expensive and are more durable than traditional recycled materials,” said Paul Mancuso, vice president of technology and materials for the American Renewable Energy Laboratory (AREL).
“It saves the cost per unit and saves money.”
Manciso said that while the cost-plus model may not sound like a big deal, it is.
“It’s one of the most significant innovations in the industry that’s come along in a really long time,” Mancaso said.
In fact, the cost reduction is the biggest reason the American Clean Energy Finance Corp. (ACEFC) decided to support the recycling of recycled fiber materials.
ACEFC is one of several major credit card companies that are investing in the American Recycled Fiber industry.
“This is a huge opportunity to really reduce our carbon footprint and to get the materials we use into more affordable products,” Mascuso said of the new model.
“And we’re also going to be able to save money.”
And while many companies are already embracing the new recycling methods, the industry is still growing.
“Recycling is a major trend that is going to continue to grow over time, and the industry has not yet realized it,” said Doug Beyer, vice chair of the renewable energy program at the American Wind Energy Association.
“In order to make it more cost efficient, you have to have a different cost-benefit analysis, which is the difference between saving money and increasing carbon emissions.”
The cost-based approach also has other benefits.
A new report by researchers at the University of Utah, the University at Buffalo, and The University of Southern California’s School of Business found that if all of the recycled materials are reused in the U, the total amount of COVID in the air would decrease by about 1.5 million tons by 2050.
But that doesn’t mean the industry can’t still do more.
“A lot of it will come down to the cost,” Beyer said.
But for now, the research suggests that a “cost plus” model is the only way to go.
The cost reduction will likely come in the form of a tax on the carbon emissions that are released by the recycling method, and that could also encourage other companies to start incorporating the recycling into their recycling programs.