If you bring a piece of copper into a scrap metal dealer today, you’ll likely receive around $3.00 per pound. That’s up substantially from the 75cents per pound you might have received four years ago. Prices for other types of scrap metal, from aluminum to steel, are also up. But with the boom in business, comes a rising amount of theft. As a result, the Vermont Senate has passed a bill that would require scrap dealers to check identification and keep detailed sale records.
Chuck Carr is Vice President of Member Services for the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries in Washington DC. Ryan Towns is a co-owner of All Metals Recycling in Hardwick. Trooper Callie Field handles the state’s highest profile case of copper theft. Tom Longstreth is the Executive Director of ReCycle North in Burlington. They spoke with VPR’s Jane Lindholm about the many aspects of scrap metal recycling, sales and theft.