Mining and Easter: Canada’s role in producing ‘green’ aluminum

This weekend, thousands of Canadian kids will scour gardens and parks for colorful treats left behind by the Easter bunny. Although quickly discarded for the chocolatey goodness inside, spare a thought for the aluminum foil wrapping.

The foil coating your Easter egg is a thin sheet of aluminium metal, the same material used for drink cans, food packaging, insulation, cables, electronics, car and aerospace parts, and buildings. Aluminium is strong, light, easy to shape, and acts as barrier protecting the food inside from light, air, moisture, and odors, and infinitely recyclable using just a fraction of the energy used to produce it.

Global demand for aluminum is projected to increase by almost 5 per cent between 2015 and 2020 and motor vehicle manufacturers are leading the charge. For every kilogram of aluminium that replaces a heavier material, greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions are reduced by 20 kilograms over the life of the vehicle. Ford Motor Company, for example, released the F-150 pick-up truck in 2015 with an aluminum alloy body over a traditional frame. The truck is 318 kg lighter than the previous model and with fuel economy figures that are 5 to 29 per cent better than its predecessor.

Read the full story: The Canadian Minerals and Metals Plan