Urban mining: hibernating copper stocks in local power grids
2011 (English)In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, Vol. 19, no 9-10, 1052-1056Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Large technical systems serving the everyday needs of people, such as water supply systems, power gridsor communication networks, are rich in accumulated metals. Over time, parts of these systems have beentaken out of use without the system infrastructure being removed from its original location. Such metalstocks in hibernation thus constitute potential resource reservoirs accessible for recovery. In this paper,obsolete stocks of copper situated in the local power grids of two Swedish cities are quantified. Emphasisis also on economic conditions for extracting such “hibernating” cables. The results show that on a percustomer basis, the two power grids contain similar amounts of copper, i.e. 0.04e0.05 tonnes persubscriber. However, the share of the copper stock that is in hibernation differs between the grids. In thelarger grid of Gothenburg, almost 20% of the copper accumulated in the grid is no longer in use, while theobsolete share does not exceed 5% in the city of Linköping. For managers of local power grids, recovery ofhibernating cables could be beneficial if integrated with other maintenance work on the grid. At thepresent price of copper, however, separate recovery of obsolete cables is not economically justified.
Resource recovery, cables, metal stocks, hibernation, economic performance
National CategoryOther Environmental Engineering
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-67254DOI: 10.1016/j.jclepro.2011.01.015ISI: 000290702800014OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-67254DiVA: diva2:408750
Joakim Krook, Mats Eklund, Per Frändegård, Niclas Svensson and Annica Carlsson, Urban mining: hibernating copper stocks in local power grids, 2011, Journal of Cleaner Production, (19), 9-10, 1052-1056.
Copyright: Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam.