According to the EPA, in 2008 Americans recycled or composted a total of 83 million tons of solid waste, 33.2 percent of our total waste stream of 250 million tons. Aluminum made up 3.4 millions tons, or 1.3 percent of the total waste stream. The recycling rate for aluminum cans was 48.2 percent, which means that 1.64 tons of aluminum was recycled. So, aluminum cans make up almost 2 percent of the total amount of material recycled. That doesn’t seem like a lot, but keep in mind that aluminum is a very light material.
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