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Rio offers first closed-loop aluminium recycling solution

Rio Tinto has bolstered its low-carbon aluminium production credentials by partnering with Shawinigan Aluminium Inc (SAI) for its recycling services, through a US$7 million state-of-the art melting facility being built next to SAI’s billet casthouse in Quebec.

Staff Reporter
 Rio Tinto aluminium billets

Rio Tinto aluminium billets

Expected to start up next year, the first closed-loop recycling solution centre will recycle clean process aluminium scrap from Rio Tinto and others to meet the rising demand for more sustainably produced products.

The plant will have capacity of about 30,000 tonnes per annum and add eight permanent jobs at the Quebec, Canada, operation.

SAI said the remelt plant project would also provide it with added operational flexibility, increase its product lineup and reduce production cycle times.

"As a SAI customer, Rio Tinto will be able to offer its customers integrated solutions ranging from very low-carbon primary aluminium to closed-loop recycled aluminium billets, produced from their own clean recycled scrap," said Rio's aluminium industrial product and investment director, Jean Francois Laplante.

Rio Tinto in 2016 launched the industry's first certified low-carbon aluminium and in 2018 became the first to receive certification under the Aluminium Stewardship Initiative as producing ‘responsible' aluminium.

The major had formed a joint venture with USA-based Alcoa called ELYSIS, which with the support of Apple and the governments of Canada and Quebec, is working to develop a new smelting technology free of direct carbon emissions.

 

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