The Steel Recycling Institute, Pittsburgh, reports that despite a sluggish economy in 2001, steel-recycling rates advanced and steel continues to be North America’s most recycled material. The SRI reports that the steel industry recycled nearly 66 million tons of scrap in 2001, resulting in an overall steel recycling rate of 67.8 percent. This represents a 5.7-percent increase over 2000.

The steel recycling rate for construction and demolition debris remains 95 percent for structural beams and plates. The recycling rate for rebar and other construction materials increased slightly to 50 percent in 2001 as more of these products are being separated from concrete.