and Recycling

Constellium is an industry leader in the sustainable production and recycling of aluminium products.

Life Cycle Assessments

Our approach uses Life Cycle Assessments (LCAs) to identify ways of improving the environmental performance of existing products and those in development.

A Life Cycle Assessment provides data on a product’s overall environmental impact and covers all stages in a product’s life. It also provides tools for assessing impact other than carbon footprints or energy consumption. Life Cycle Assessments help us identify where we can help improve the environmental impact of our products. Recycling  for beverage cans and protection of the wine for closures are respectively key levers to reduce the environmental footprint in these markets.

  • For beverage cans: End-of-life recycling significantly reduces their environmental impact. Aside from one indicator (terrestrial ecotoxicity), there is a strong linear decrease in impact when the recycling rate increases.
  • For closures:  No bottles are lost with screw caps versus many with cork stoppers due to the common phenomenon of corked wine.

Our Commitment to Recycling

Constellium is an industry leader in the sustainable production and recycling of aluminium products. We recycle each year the equivalent of 3 billion beverage cans in our Neuf-Brisach plant and have a capacity of recycling 20 Bn Used Beverage Cans in our Muscle Shoals site, Alabama.

Aluminium is valuable at every stage of its life cycle, from production through to end of use. It can be endlessly recycled to deliver new products with the same properties as those made from primary material.

Recycling aluminium requires about 5% of the energy needed to produce it from virgin materials, reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 95%.

Constellium is a strong supporter of the European aluminium industry’s target to recycle 80% of all beverage cans by 2020.

Recycling Nespresso Capsules

As part of our commitment to sustainability and maximizing opportunities for aluminium recycling and reuse, our Singen plant in Germany has been working closely with Nespresso on an innovative recycling project, transforming end-of-life coffee capsules into Victorinox knives and Zena peelers. The project is also recycling old capsules into new ones.

A Partnership Approach

Constellium works with the European Aluminium Association, the US Aluminium Association, European can makers and the Can Manufacturers Institute to increase beverage can recycling.

We engage in a range of initiatives with our customers and partners:

  • Constellium is a founding member of the Aluminium Stewardship Initiative (ASI) that works to establish and promote an industry standard for the responsible production and use of aluminium across the value chain. In particular, it focuses on the collection and recycling of products at the end of their life cycle.
  • We actively support Every Can Counts®, a Beverage Can Makers Europe (BCME) initiative to boost beverage can recycling rates in Europe. We work with the BCME on a communication and collection program, encouraging people to recycle cans they use outside the home.
  • In partnership with Metal Packaging Europe, we advocate for metals to be classified as permanent materials, and for the use of relevant recycling metrics.
  • We work with local organizations such as France Aluminium Recyclage, the UK-based Alupro, and Germany’s GDA to develop and stimulate collection infrastructure in each market.