U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) breaks ground on Nucor Steel in Apple Grove, W.Va., on Friday, October 20, 2023.
Friday, October 20th, was groundbreaking day for Nucor Steel’s mill in Mason County. The event was a big deal. U.S. Senators Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito were among the Guinness record setting 545-plus to take shovel-in-hand at the ceremony.
The steel sheet mill at $2.7 billion is the largest investment in the history of Nucor. The mill will have the capacity to produce 3 million tons of steel sheet annually and will employ approximately 800 full-time employees after it begins commercial operations. In addition, approximately 1,000 temporary construction jobs will be created during the building of the steel mill, which is estimated to take 2 years. Production at the mill is slated to begin before the end of 2026.
The new mill will be one of the most technologically advanced sheet mills and will also have one of the lowest carbon footprints of any sheet mill in the world. The new mill will have advanced steelmaking capabilities, including a high-end automotive galvanizing line and construction-grade line that will allow Nucor to further grow sales of value-added products into these two important end-use markets for sheet steel.
Nucor Corporation, based in Charlotte, North Carolina, is the largest steel producer in the U.S. and the largest recycler of any material in North America. The company operates 25 steel mills that produce approximately one-quarter of America’s raw steel using scrap metal as its primary raw material, and more than 250 facilities that produce raw materials or finished steel products for non-residential construction, infrastructure, automotive, heavy equipment, renewable energy and other applications. Nucor is ranked #149 in the 2020 Fortune 500 largest public companies in America and employs approximately 28,000 teammates.
“Today is an incredibly exciting occasion, and proves the progress that we can make in West Virginia by working together across all levels of government and the private sector. Nucor’s establishment in Mason County will put our state at center stage in supporting critical infrastructure and national security efforts in the future. As I was helping negotiate and craft the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act that is now law, this is the impact that I knew it could make in our state, and I’m thrilled to see it coming to fruition today,” Senator Capito said. “Since the announcement in January 2022, I have worked alongside Nucor’s leaders throughout the process and advocated on their behalf. Today’s groundbreaking is the culmination of that work.”
In prepared remarks, Senator Manchin said, “West Virginia’s steel industry was started in Wheeling in 1884. Before and since then, we’ve mined the coal that forged the steel that built the guns and ships that turned the United States of America into the world’s superpower. That would not have been possible without the people of West Virginia. This little state of West Virginia has given everything she has to this great country of ours — but for a while, we’ve felt like the returning Vietnam Veteran. West Virginians did the dirty work, but we were cast aside. Now, we have arrived, and we are here today to show the rest of the world what our state can do for the infrastructure and energy our country needs and our world needs. Today’s groundbreaking is an opportunity to take that legacy to the next level.”
Chair, President & Chief Executive Officer of Nucor Corporation Leon Topalian thanked Capito and Manchin for their support. “As one of the strongest and most diversified industrial manufacturers in the United States and one of the top five recyclers in the world, Nucor is proud to bring this transformative project to the State of West Virginia. Once operational, our new facility in Mason County will supply the clean, American-made sheet steel products that will be needed to build our nation’s economy for decades to come,” Topalian said.