The 10th European Metallurgical Conference EMC 2019 was held in Düsseldorf from 23rd to 26th June. EMC is a well-established opportunity for engineers in the metals industry to catch up with the recent developments in non-ferrous metals recovery and recycling. It’s also a unique opportunity to meet colleagues and academics from the non-ferrous industry and research institutes in Europe and beyond.

EMC 2019 attracted 325 participants from the zinc, copper, lead, nickel, and other non-ferrous metal industries, among them 10 IZA member companies. Numerous presentations in four parallel sessions were linked to “Optimum utilization of resources and recycling for a sustainable solution.” IZA presented on zinc’s outstanding contributions to the circular economy, where durability and recycling are key success factors – both attributes that zinc is well known for.

Many presentations focused on the recycling of zinc from byproducts, residues, and waste generated in the production process, such as zinc residues from smelters or dusts from steel making. The challenge in both cases is making the recycling of zinc and other metals from low zinc bearing materials economically feasible. Jens Nyberg, manager R&D Strategic Projects at Boliden Smelters, summarized the most important impacting factors for success in his plenary presentation, “Challenges for non-ferrous industry – less waste and recovering more metals, ” which include the availability of recycling technologies and of a regulatory framework that allows for the safe use of metallurgical products such as inert slags.

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