NSW Department of Planning and Environment

Blast furnace upgrade to secure our steel

  • Date: 05.10.2022
  • Type: Ministerial Media Release
  • Author: NSW Department of Planning and Environment

Steel production in NSW is secured following planning approval on work to upgrade a blast furnace at Port Kembla Steelworks.

Executive Director for Energy, Resources and Industry Assessments Clay Preshaw said the $789 million project would see the currently decommissioned blast furnace ready to be brought back online to help BlueScope continue its steel manufacturing, and secure supply to job sites throughout Australia.

“This is a project that will have a big impact on the local economy, with the creation of up to 250 construction jobs for the upgrade and increased job security for the 4,500 workers already on site at the steelworks,” Mr Preshaw said.

“This approval means that the steelworks will continue for years to come, as BlueScope gets this blast furnace ready to take over when another comes to the end of its life in 2026.

Mr Preshaw said the project was declared Critical State Significant Infrastructure last year, given its importance to the NSW economy, building industry and regional workforce.

“More than 70 per cent of the three million tonnes of steel produced at the facility each year is for the Australian market, contributing $10.3 billion annually to the NSW economy,” he said.

“The upgrade will include removing and replacing materials from inside the furnace, as well as supporting equipment, such as cooling and power systems.

“While undertaking this work, the furnace will also be fitted with modern technologies to reduce emissions and allow for a transition to even more lower emissions technologies in the future.”

You can find more information about the project on the NSW Planning Portal.