Reuters: Shutting Down High-Carbon Aluminum in … China?

March 24, 2021April 1st, 2021
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AEGIS View: Current curtailments or shutdowns are relatively modest but if China continues down the eco path, supply-demand balances could be disrupted.

“The carbon footprint of primary aluminum can span a wide range from less than 5 tonnes of carbon equivalent for renewable energy such as hydro to more than 25 tonnes for coal.”

Reuters, 3/19/2021

Source article (opens in new tab): Column: Aluminum rattled by signs of “green” disruption in China

Article Summary

China forced aluminum smelters to shut down for over-use of energy. The coal-fired power, popular with Chinese producers, is under restriction by the government.
  • China used coal for power for near 90% of its aluminum smelting in 2019, compared to North America, which is about 82% from hydroelectric
  • China’s Inner Mongolia curbed aluminum output because of energy-use (read: “coal”) limits
  • Future aluminum expansions are under threat
  • Less aluminum production in China has coincided with high imports – early-2021 imports of unwrought metal were higher than any period going back to 2009-2010

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