I had just a shade over 3800 pounds of clean bright when it was "processed". At the time copper was $3.15 a pound. Best job I ever did, they even paid a haul bill to remove all the "junk" cable. This was the first of 3 loads.
I would have raced to the recyclyer so fast that the cable would not have even existed! About three years ago, I got paid to gut a five year-old 10 story office building of all voice and data cabling that originally housed a failed "dot com" company. Not only did I get paid to rip it out, I also got paid to haul it away AND picked up about $10K in scrap value. On top of that, I got paid to go in and recable three floors for a new tenant with new CAT6 cable. What a country!
I had a big job where there was an old pullbox that was literally the size of a phone booth. It was crammed with wire that I needed to trace out for my design. I found so many dead-ended conductors that I just told the guys to strip out all of the abandoned wires and call me back when they were done.
When I got back I found that basically everything but a dozen wires were actually unused and had been cleared out.
The foreman told me that he almost had a fight on his hands over who would end up with the scrap...and this was WAY before Copper prices went insane.
There's a telcom switching station in Cambridge that has a dis-used lightning protection system: 2000MCM copper strung throughout an eight-story building that takes up half a city block. The phone company wants the system removed, but the copper is worth so much they want the demo crews to pay them for the privilege of coming in to remove it.