Novelis Inc. will invest approximately $50 million to build a recycling center at its Ulsan Aluminum joint venture in South Korea. Fully funded by Novelis, the Ulsan Recycling Center will have an annual casting capacity of 100 kilotonnes of low-carbon sheet ingot. Novelis expects the recycling center to reduce the company's carbon emissions by more than 420,000 tons each year. Construction of the Ulsan Recycling Center is scheduled to begin in October, and commissioning is expected in early 2024.
The Aluminum Association released a technology roadmap that details short-, mid- and long-term research-and-development priorities in support of its automotive customers. The 2022 Roadmap for Automotive Aluminum identifies pathways and prioritizes opportunities for critical collaboration among aluminum suppliers, recyclers, automakers, policymakers, non-governmental organizations and other industry stakeholders to drive innovation throughout the next decade.
The Aluminum Association launched the Choose Aluminum campaign, which includes a digital media ad buy, videos with workers and aluminum leaders, a new sustainability website and additional material highlighting the sustainable properties of the 100% recyclable metal. The campaign describes how aluminum is providing sustainable solutions in the areas of recycling, automotive production, building and construction more. It also tracks how the North American aluminum industry has reduced its carbon footprint by more than half over the last 30 years. The U.S. aluminum industry supports nearly 660,000 jobs and has invested over $3 billion in U.S. manufacturing over the past decade.
Alcoa Corp. plans to restart 268,000 metric tons per year (mtpy) of aluminum capacity at its Alumar smelter in São Luís, Brazil. The facility has been fully curtailed since 2015. The process to restart will begin immediately. The first molten metal is expected in the second quarter of 2022, and the full 268,000 mtpy of capacity is expected to be operational in the fourth quarter of 2022. The Alumar smelter restart will involve the hiring of more than 750 employees.
AA Metals Inc., a Florida-headquartered aluminum distributor, purchased a dormant aluminum plant in Williamsport, Pa., with plans to reopen and hire 100 employees. The facility will be the company’s first U.S.-based manufacturing operation and will operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The former JW Aluminum plant closed in January 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The new business, which will be named Chance Aluminum, will focus on production of aluminum foil and coil and will serve as the domestic supplier of AA Metals.
KPS Capital Partners (KPS) signed a definitive agreement to acquire the global aluminum rolling business (Rolling) from Norsk Hydro ASA for approximately $1.67 billion. The transaction is expected to be complete by the middle of the year. Rolling is one of the largest global manufacturers of aluminum rolled products and serves customers across markets including automotive, beverage can, foil packaging and construction. Its assets include seven manufacturing facilities and one research-and-development center across Germany and Norway. The acquired facilities include Alunorf, the world’s largest aluminum rolling mill according to Norsk Hydro, and Grevenbroich, the world’s largest rolled aluminum finishing mill according to Norsk Hydro.
The Aluminum Association released a series of policy documents laying out priorities to support a strong U.S. aluminum industry. “Presidential Policy Brief: Recommendations for a Strong U.S. Aluminum Industry” includes several recommendations for the Biden administration and Congress to support a growing and vibrant aluminum sector in the United States. An addendum to the industry’s overarching Aluminum Agenda released in 2019, the brief includes key policy goals in the areas of the energy, environment, infrastructure, recycling and trade.
Kaiser Aluminum Corp. entered into a definitive agreement to purchase Alcoa Warrick LLC, containing all the assets of the Warrick Rolling Mill, from Alcoa Corp. for a purchase price of $670 million. Alcoa will retain ownership of the related smelting assets, power plant and land. As part of the transaction, Kaiser Aluminum will enter into a market-based molten aluminum supply agreement. The Warrick facility includes casting, significant hot- and cold-rolling capacity, and a range of finishing and coating lines. Warrick, which is located near Evansville, Ind., has shipped over 675 million pounds of aluminum in the last 12 months.
Aluminum Association President and CEO Tom Dobbins issued the following statement in response to the announcement by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) removing recently reimplemented tariffs on imports of unwrought, or P1020, aluminum from Canada into the United States. The decision was made after “the United States … determined that trade in non-alloyed, unwrought aluminum is likely to normalize in the last four months of 2020, with imports declining sharply from the surges experienced earlier in the year,” consistent with industry expectations.