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Now recycled in Norway: drink cans get a shorter trip to their new life

Recycling of used Norwegian drink cans will soon be even more environmentally friendly. The recycling process is moving from France to Hydro in Holmestrand.

Norwegians are world champions in returning cans for recycling, and close to half a billion beer and soda cans will be collected and recycled this year.

Now the collection company Norsk Resirk has entered into an agreement with Hydro to recycle the cans at Hydro's recycling plant in Holmestrand. This is currently done by a company in France. The agreement means a much shorter and more environmentally friendly transport distance for more than 6,200 metric tons of aluminium annually.

"We are pleased that Hydro wants to recycle for us. This means that our deposit and collection system will be even more environmentally friendly," says Kjell Olav Maldum, CEO of Norsk Resirk AS.

The company announced before the summer that a new recycling facility for plastic bottles will be built in the Heia industrial area in the town of Fetsund. The new agreement with Hydro means that all cans and bottles with a return for deposit label will soon get new lives at plants in Norway.

Hydro is a world leading aluminium producer completely committed to recycling. Hydro recycles 60,000 mt of aluminium annually in Holmestrand. This metal has previously been used in everything from car parts to printing plates in newspaper production. Now drink cans will be added to the mix.

"Aluminium can be recycled over and over again with no loss in quality. Recycling uses only five percent of the energy needed to produce new metal. With the transport distances for the drink cans now significantly reduced and the cans processed by the Norwegian recycling industry, this is a victory for Norway and the environment," says Hydro President and CEO Svein Richard Brandtzæg.

Resirk and Hydro will work together to further increase the recovery of aluminium and find the most environmentally friendly transport solutions.

Of all the aluminium produced since 1886, as much as 75 percent is still in use. The aluminium produced in Norway has the world's smallest carbon footprint, because the metal is made with renewable water power and because Hydro is a global leader in aluminium technology, according to a joint announcement from Norsk Resirk and Hydro.