Steel Sustainability

Environmental and resource conservation issues rose to prominence in the public policy arena in the 1970’s. Now, in the 21st century, managing resources sustainably is a growing concern.

While legislation and regulation are often sources of controversy, the US Congress recognized the importance of sustainable manufacturing with Senate Resolution 251 in 2011, “Expressing support for improvement in the collection, processing, and consumption of recyclable materials throughout the United States.”

It’s a point of pride for the steel industry that it has always been in the forefront of sustainable manufacturing.

Estimated Tons of Steel Recycled by Material

What are the benefits of recycling steel?

From the Steel Recycling Institute:

Recycling steel helps save landfill space while providing a valuable scrap resource to the steel industry. Using old steel to make new steel also preserves natural resources and energy. For every ton of steel recycled, 2,500 pounds of iron ore, 1,400 pounds of coal and 120 pounds of limestone are conserved. And in a year, the steel industry conserves the equivalent energy to power about 18 million homes for 12 months or enough to provide the city of Los Angeles power for roughly eight years.
Steel Recycling

North America’s #1 Recycled Material

  • Each year, more steel is recycled in the US than paper, plastic, aluminum and glass combined.
  • As of 2013 data, the overall recycling rate of steel is 81%.

Steel Recycling Institute

Century Club

STI/SPFA’s Century Club demonstrates the sustainability of steel. These water storage tanks and water pipes, at the time of award, had been in active service for 100 years or more.

View the Club

Additional Resources

“Associating with other fabricators has improved our manufacturing and broadened our abilities.”

Jim O’Day
O’Day Tanks

Learn More