Estimation on sustainability for copper domestic supply by considering recycling flow (a case study of automobile, electric appliances and construction industries)

Tadashi Karai, Masaru Nakano, Fumihiko Kimura

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)


The purpose of this paper is to estimate and assess a future state of domestic copper supply from a viewpoint of sustainability. The authors develop a simulation model of material flow of domestic copper resources and then estimate the demand and the supply toward 2030. A recycle flow with time series is considered as well for the estimation. Automobile, electric appliance and construction industries are considered in this paper under the scope of recycle laws in Japan. The simulation result illustrates that copper stock in market is estimated to be 4.1 million tons and the copper supply produced from scrap metal is 120 000 tons. Furthermore, the result prospects shortage of copper resources as much as 54 000-59 000 tons against the domestic demand in 2030 even considering improvement of the recycle system. Therefore, the authors conclude that domestic copper resource is not sustainable in Japan and thus emphasize two important countermeasures such as reducing copper usage for the next generation vehicle and further sharing of recycled resources among other industries.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3744-3751
Number of pages8
JournalNihon Kikai Gakkai Ronbunshu, C Hen/Transactions of the Japan Society of Mechanical Engineers, Part C
Issue number772
Publication statusPublished - 2010 Dec
Externally publishedYes



  • Automobile
  • Copper
  • Material flow
  • Recycling
  • Social system design
  • Sustainability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

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