The ramifications of America's. Cash for Clunkers program are still being figured out – which isn't all that surprising given that a total of 700,000 or so sales totaling $2.877 billion were processed in just one month. And besides facing the unfortunate lack of suitable demolition derby material, scrapyards are reportedly finding themselves ill-equipped to deal with all the junked iron sitting behind their barbed-wire fences.
To fully benefit from the program, these scrap cars need to be properly recycled, a process that includes removing most (if not all) of the good usable parts from each vehicle before sending the remaining hulk through crush and melt-down machines. According to the rules outlined in the original Car Allowance Rebate System documentation, recyclers had six months to dispose of all these car-casses. Apparently, that's not nearly enough time.
The American Recyclers Association explains that the initial six month deadline might have been acceptable before Congress tripled the size of the C4C program, but more time will likely be needed to deal with the mess left by the program's expansion. Another six months is now being requested of the Department of Transportation, though no final decisions have been made thus far.
[Source: The Associated Press via MSNBC | Image: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images]