Scraponomics Episode 101: Metal Theft Presentation (Summary) - Cooperation Station

Oct 08, 2015, 04:12 PM

“When people work toward a common goal, they are driven, passionate, and purposeful.” — Richard Branson

Over the past few weeks, we’ve tried to deconstruct the behemoth issue of metal theft, mainly because it’s too much to cram into one Scraponomics episode. From understanding the economic and environmental benefits of the scrap recycling industry, to diving into the specifics of why metal theft happens, to learning what we can all do to help reduce it, metal theft is clearly a complicated topic. It’s worth having a constructive, ongoing conversation that’s free of catchy tag-lines and easy targets.

During the Q&A after my presentation at the Michigan State Police Metal Theft Seminar in August, I could feel the discussion moving in a positive direction. It feels like industry and law enforcement are really trying to work together on multiple fronts; stopping the thieves who are stealing property, and stopping the bad actors who are knowingly buying stolen property as scrap.

It lays in industry providing law enforcement with information that’s understandable and educating them on what to look for. It lays in law enforcement being proactive in communicating with scrap facilities right when stolen property has been reported. It lays in the public knowing how to protect their property to best of their ability and also being proactive in reporting stolen material. It lays in the legislature understanding the importance of the scrap industry to society, and utilizing technology to help reduce metal theft, rather than archaic methods.

As cliché as it may sound, it lays in all of us working together if we stand a chance at solving these problems. I think we’re on our way.

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