BHP backs coking coal instead of hydrogen for steelmaking

As the future of green steel is still unknown, BHP Mitsubishi Alliance (BMA) has applied to extend the life of its high-grade 6 million t/yr Peak Downs hard coking coal mine by up to 93 years.

Despite its pledge to stop all investment in its Queensland coking coal business, BHP’s commitment to using metallurgical coal in steelmaking is further solidified by the planned 93-year extension to the Peak Downs mine in Queensland. BMA is owned by BHP and Mitsubishi to a 50/50 split, with BHP serving as operator.

According to BHP, the best interim solution is to use high-grade coking coal, like those generated at Peak Downs, with carbon capture and storage because practical manufacturing of green steel utilizing hydrogen is decades away. The desire for higher-quality coking coal led BHP to sell its 80 percent ownership of inferior BHP Mitsui Coal to Australian manufacturer Stanmore.