Hydro aims to increase aluminium recycling capacity in Wrexham

Hydro plans to develop remelt scrap ingot production at its plant in Wrexham, UK to increase recycling of post-consumer scrap, providing European customers with more low-carbon aluminium.

“We see increasing interest from forward leaning customers across Europe to buy Hydro’s low-carbon aluminium, particularly within the automotive, transport, and buildings and construction segments,” says Ingrid Guddal, Head of Recycling in Hydro Aluminium Metal.

Hydro is planning an investment in its UK Wrexham plant, increasing the aluminium recycling capacity to a total of around 103,000 tonnes per year.

The remelt scrap ingot (RSI) production in Wrexham will strengthen Hydro’s position in the UK market and enable the plant to process and recycle a wider range of post-consumer aluminium scrap. The planned investment to increase the capacity is currently estimated to be GBP 25-35 million and will provide around 30 full time jobs.

“We are eager to increase our capacity here in Wrexham to meet increased customer demand for low-carbon aluminium. Every year, around one million tonnes of aluminium scrap leaves Europe. This investment will ensure that more post-consumer scrap is kept in the loop and processed here at home. The remelt scrap ingot will then be turned into new, low-carbon aluminium products that contribute to Europe’s green transition,” says Wayne Clifton, Hydro’s plant manager in Wrexham.

Scrap will be sourced from local scrap suppliers in the region. The remelt scrap ingot produced at the plant will be used as feedstock in Hydro’s European portfolio of recyclers and primary plants. Blending in more recycled post-consumer scrap allows Hydro to further reduce the emission footprint in its primary and recycled products.

Hydro is also looking at opportunities to further support its recycling ambitions. Hydro Wrexham recently acquired property close to its existing aluminium recycling plant to develop a sorting facility. This project will be developed further and a decision to implement will be made later.

Hydro has an overall ambition to double its recycling of post-consumer scrap by 2025 and the project in Wrexham is one of several investments made to reach this target. The use of post-consumer aluminium scrap significantly reduces the CO2 footprint compared to so called pre-consumer, or process scrap, and the carbon footprint of primary aluminium.

Hydro is preparing to make an investment decision to increase aluminium recycling capacity in Wrexham during 2023.

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