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Sustainability in the Aluminum Industry in North America Presentation for NAM Marshall Jinlong Wang July 2013.

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Presentation on theme: "Sustainability in the Aluminum Industry in North America Presentation for NAM Marshall Jinlong Wang July 2013."— Presentation transcript:

1 Sustainability in the Aluminum Industry in North America Presentation for NAM Marshall Jinlong Wang July 2013

2 Contents Aluminum Association and Aluminum Products Approach to Sustainability Actions to Sustainability Future Opportunities

3 The Aluminum Association  98 Member Companies: 51 aluminum producers and semi-fabricators and 47 technology and service providers  Representing the majority of aluminum product’s value chain including resource extraction, material production and product fabrication  Membership highly diversified with multinational companies, regional players and local small businesses  Goal is to promote the production and use of aluminum as the sustainable material of choice

4 Characteristics of Aluminum and Products  Strong and light weight  Versatile - Can be made into any shapes, sizes, and gauges to serve any designated functions  Rust & corrosion resistance  Great thermal and electrical conductor  Infinitely recyclable  Serving hundreds of millions of people in their daily life from food and accommodation to mobility and entertainment

5 Life Cycle of Aluminum

6 Approach to Sustainability Triple-Bottom-Line Life-Cycle-Thinking

7 Sustainability – Step I Research and Support  Analyzing the industry – quantitative approach  Identify trends, challenges and opportunities  Lay foundations for benchmarking and future goal setting  Analysis included product analysis and industry analysis  Extensive data survey and information compiling:  life cycle assessment survey,  industry sustainability management survey,  product use phase survey,  recycling survey, etc. – a very slow and painful process

8 Sustainability – Step II Benchmark and Continuous Improvement  Set long-term goals and sustainability pathways – voluntary programs  Reduce GHG Emissions and other environmental footprints  Document and Improve Use Phase Benefits  Increase Material Recovery  Promote and monitor progress  Keep the material for future generations

9 Step I Findings  Tremendous progress has been achieved during the past two decades in increasing efficiency and reducing environmental footprints during the production stage.  from 1990 to 2010, primary energy demand associated with primary aluminum production has been reduced 26%. Primary energy demand for aluminum recycling has been reduced 52%  Aluminum applications help society save energy and reduce environmental footprints.  Our research found that the energy savings of our products help achieved during the use phase offset the energy demand during the production phase, making aluminum an energy neutral industry  Aluminum recycling not only help save critical natural resources but also significantly save energy and reduce environmental footprints.  Recycling aluminum can save up to 95% of energy demanded for producing aluminum from bauxite ore.  End-of-life aluminum recycling in North America helps save at least 406 trillion Btu of energy each year

10 Step I Findings – Continued  Industry voluntary sustainability programs have had significant contributions to the society in reducing the environmental footprint.  from 1990, the North American aluminum industry has voluntarily reduced its PFC (a greenhouse gas) emission intensity of primary aluminum production by 85%.  This is the equivalent of a total of 200 million tons of CO2e elimination over two decades  Leader in using renewable energy among material industries: the share of renewable energy use for aluminum products is the highest among most other common materials –  more than 30% in terms of accumulative primary energy demand  75% during the aluminum smelting process

11 Future Opportunities  Recycling – limited understanding and consistent metal loss during the end-of-life of some products – estimated at least one million tons of metal loss each year  Product use phase – very limited understanding in terms of what’s exactly happening during the use time due to the extremely diversified applications as well as the very long life time in use  How can we do better – Constant efficiency improvement versus law of physics – Limited influence for small businesses on their supply chain – Technological breakthrough process takes time

12 Appendix: Footprints of the Industry

13 Appendix: Current Voluntary Programs

14 For more information, please visit:

15 Questions? Thank You!


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