US Steel to build new 3mn st/yr EAF mill

Integrated steelmaker US Steel will begin exploring locations for a new 3mn short ton (st)/yr flat-rolled electric arc furnace (EAF) steel mill as it transitions to more scrap-based steelmaking.

The facility would cost $3bn to build and would contain two EAFs and produce advanced grades of steel. US Steel expects to begin construction of the new mill in the first half of 2022 with production beginning in 2024.

"Our goal is to build capability to get better, not bigger," chief executive David Burritt said. "By accelerating our transition to more efficient minimill steelmaking, we expect to continue differentiating ourselves versus less efficient capacity while improving our through-cycle profitability and lowering our capital and carbon intensity."

US Steel said it may locate the mill within a state where it currently operates or at a greenfield site. Final site selection and construction terms will be subject to state and local incentive considerations and final approval by US Steel's board.

US Steel currently operates two EAF-based mills: the 3.3mn st/yr Big River Steel site in Osceola, Arkansas, and its tubular Fairfield Works in Alabama, while the majority of its capacity still relies on iron ore-consuming blast furnaces.

Prior to [starting up]( the Fairfield EAF in October 2020 and acquiring Big River Steel in January 2021, US Steel's operations were entirely integrated.

In early 2020, US Steel idled the remaining 1.4mn st/yr blast furnace at its integrated Great Lakes Works in Michigan, having idled the other 1.34mn st/yr blast furnace in 2019.

The new steel mill would bring US Steel's raw steel production rate to 18.1mn st/yr. One blast furnace, the 1.4mn st/yr blast Furnace A at Granite City works in Illinois, is currently idled and not included in that figure.