Recycling automotive wiring harnesses has traditionally been difficult. There is simply too much other “stuff” bundled in with the copper. Photo courtesy Toyota Motor Corp. Toyota’s new recycling process begins by crushing and shredding the harness. The crushed material is then sent to a specific gravity sorting system, which separates resins from metals. Next, the metal particulates pass through a mesh strainer to separate out terminals and other metal parts. Finally, the remaining metal particulates pass through a magnetic screening system, which removes any ferrous particles. Photo courtesy Toyota Motor Corp. Post-consumer material, such as old wiring, typically accounts for 39 percent to 46 percent of recycled copper, but that percentage is expected to grow rapidly in the near future. Photo courtesy TKO Recycling No. 1 grade copper wires contain no metallic contaminants and are the most valued for recycling. Photo courtesy TKO Recycling By some estimates, approximately 40 years’ worth of mineable copper resources remains worldwide. At the same time, global consumption is growing, driven particularly by infrastructure-related demand for wiring in emerging markets. In addition...