Hot dip galvanizing: an excellent example of circular economy
Today, with Bottaro wire, there is one more reason to consider galvanization a better and more ecological process than painting
We all know by now: the sustainable revolution is underway. Every sector of the economy, like it or not, is involved and the world of galvanizing is no different. Suffice it to say that hot-dip galvanizing in series is now widely used especially in construction, infrastructure and manufacturing, but also in street furniture, agriculture, transport, public utility services and for individual fastening elements.
EGGA, the European association of galvanizers, provides us with data and numbers that speak for themselves: every year there are 8 million tons of steel products subjected to hot dip galvanizing. There are 700 galvanizing plants in Europe alone. We are talking about small and medium-sized companies that, in providing employment and social value to their reference territory, are engaged every day in galvanization processes, which can be applied to literally everything: from the smallest of screws to large structural beams. Even more than 20 meters long. These are data that demonstrate how a simple choice on how to coat and protect steel products can have a huge impact on the global environment.
The great works of the future will be galvanized
Considering the wide spectrum of use and the many sectors in which hot dip galvanizing is involved, which also constitute the backbone of any economy, it becomes essential, with a view to greater responsibility for a more ecological future, to make the process of galvanization of steel more sustainable in the long term.
This explains why builders are changing their own way of thinking and approaching the subject, starting to design more flexible and adaptable buildings that can provide not only basic functions for a longer period of time, but that take also consider any new functions and future new users. In short, today we try to design a building starting from components that are reusable and from resources that have a positive residual value.
And this also explains why it is becoming increasingly evident that the great works of the future will be galvanized. All this, necessarily, will take place at the expense of the more classic alternative to galvanization: painting.
Hot dip galvanizing VS painting: why the first is more sustainable
But then one wonders what zinc offers more than paint when coating steel, in terms of sustainability and therefore thinking from a circular economy perspective.
Well, it is the real characteristics of galvanized steel, its durability, its strength and its adaptability, which make it preferable to painting, precisely in terms of the recyclability of metal structures and components.
The reasons, in reality, are many: they range from the greater protection offered by hot-dip galvanizing against corrosion and against climate and temperature changes, to the lesser maintenance required on the steel structure of a component. To these advantages is added the possibility of reusing the galvanized coating for several cycles, precisely by virtue of its being closely linked to steel. This allows the product to be reused together with its original coating without the need to re-coat it.
Integrating the reuse cycles in the already consolidated steel recycling processes therefore means returning the zinc, without any loss of properties, to the zinc production plants and re-inserting it, if necessary, in a new galvanizing process, thus avoiding significant waste of raw material.
Bottaro’s contribution to the sustainable zinc supply chain
Hot dip galvanizing therefore has all the credentials to be a perfect example of the application of circular economy to industry. But to make a circular economy truly effective and sustainable, the good will of a single company that decides to implement these precautions is not enough: it is in fact necessary to think like a supply chain, so that the whole sector follows a virtuous line and philosophy, made up of shared controls and protocols.
Bottaro, as a supplier of wire for the members of the EGGA association, is inevitably an integral and essential part of this important supply chain. Its contribution, for a more sustainable supply chain, derives from the fact that its hot-dip galvanizing wire is more ecological, because it has been designed to absorb less zinc and, consequently, to consume even less during the galvanizing phase of the steel.
With the Bottaro wire, the zinc sustainability circle closes perfectly.