0.9 kg of CO2 per kg of Al! How does Neuman Aluminum do it?

With a great deal of creativity, manufacturers of semi-finished aluminum products have come up with some sounding names for their "green aluminum": Reduxa, RenewAl, SustainAl, Natur-Al, Solar-Aluminum, to name just a few

The editor-in-chief of Aluminium Praxis, Alwin Schmitt, calls these names green wonder bags because everyone puts something different in them. Neuman Aluminium is a transparent shopping net. We melt down 95% scrap for our extrusion billets and forging bars. This scrap consists of 90% unmixed process waste from our own production and purchased Post Industrial Recycling (PIR) material. 10% is PCR scrap, i.e. material that has already been in use. This includes offset printing plates, power cables and, to a lesser extent, sorted and thermally cleaned bulkheads from the collection systems. In order to achieve the tolerance of the respective 6000-series alloys, another 5% of primary aluminum is added.

If you read up on the forecasts of the International Aluminium Institute www.international-aluminium.org, you will find that primary aluminum production is expected to increase in the next few years and the share of PCR material will stagnate between 25 and 30% worldwide.

Global material flow                     2020                    2025                    2030

Primary aluminum                         73.5 Mt               79.0 Mt               73.3 Mt

Recycled aluminum (PCR)            19.0 Mt               28.3 Mt               33.7 Mt

Keeping as much of the material in the cycle as possible makes economic sense and is desirable from a sustainability point of view because it saves the environment a large proportion of emissions. Because it is judged to be low in CO2, secondary material could even be said to be more valuable than primary aluminum. This has led some suppliers to offer semi-finished products with a high recycled content at a premium price. This is a completely logical development, as demand for the limited resource of scrap has increased. There is already talk of a green premium on low-CO2 aluminum.

So how does Neuman Aluminium do it in order to get to 0.9 kg CO2 per kg Al? The CO2 rucksack of the PIR material is born by the products sold, during the production of which the scrap was created. The melting and homogenization process and, to a lesser extent, the emissions from the preparation of the PCR material contribute around 0.4 kg. For the electricity consumed to operate the peeling machine for the forging bars, we have certificates of origin and are allowed to call it emission-free. The rest of the emissions comes from the small portion of primary aluminum. Everything is easily traceable, even without the stamp of a renowned institute.