How recycling more steel and aluminum could slash imports without a trade war

Read the full story from The Conversation.

Many economists expect President Donald Trump’s tariffs on imported steel and aluminum to increase what American companies and consumers pay for those metals and the goods made from them. Dozens of companies have already said they will have to fire workers or even go out of business. And, as the retaliatory tariffs Canada, Japan, Mexico and other countries have announced underscore, the U.S. is heading for a trade war with the nation’s closest allies.

But having spent the last eight years researching how to make the steel and aluminum industries more efficient, I believe it’s possible for the U.S. to slash imports of these metals not by imposing duties but by boosting the reuse and recycling of old metal products.

Making far more of the nation’s discarded steel and aluminum scrap as good as new would have many advantages aside from its diplomatic dividends, such as cutting pollution and energy consumption.

 

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