Understanding Global Demand for Steelmaking Coal



The following content is sponsored by Teck

Steelmaking Coal Infographic

Understanding Global Demand for Steelmaking Coal

Global population growth, increased urbanization, and a growing middle class will continue to drive long-term demand for steel and the steelmaking coal required to produce it.

The above infographic from Teck outlines the mineral’s key role in the low-carbon future.

A Vital Ingredient

Steel is the most commonly used metal and fulfills a variety of structural and construction needs, along with being an essential material for the production of vehicles, mechanical equipment, and domestic appliances.

Clean and renewable technologies also require steel to build wind turbines, solar panels, tidal power systems and bioenergy infrastructure.

ApplicationQuantity of steel (kg)Quantity of steelmaking coal (kg)
Refrigerator6948
Microwave139
Gas Stove6848
Vehicle900630
1 km of Light Rail Track112,00078,400
40-Foot Shipping Container4,0002,800
Boeing 787-10 Aircraft13,5009,450
High-Voltage Transmission Tower27,00018,900
Wind Turbine260,000170,000

While some kinds of steel can be made using recycled metal, roughly 72% of global steel production relies on steelmaking coal and certain higher grades of steel can only be made using the ingredient.

How is Steel Made?

Also known as metallurgical coal or coking coal, steelmaking coal is mined to produce the carbon used in steelmaking. This is fundamentally different from thermal coal, which is used to make steam that generates electricity.

To make steel, the coal is first heated at around 1100°C to remove water and other chemicals, without the (Read more...)