SA Recycling, Orange, Calif., has announced it has completed shipment of its first load of iron ore cargo from its bulk terminal in Long Beach, Calif. The company says the shipment of 50,000 tons is the first of its kind in the southwestern United States and is the culmination of more than one year of planning and effort by SA Recycling and the Port of Long Beach.
In a news release, SA says it hopes the shipment is the start of a new operation with the potential of exporting more than 1 million tons of iron ore in 2013.
SA Recycling currently operates 55 recycling centers and six auto shredders in California, Arizona and Nevada. The company also operates two port loading facilities, one in Long Beach and the other in Los Angeles.
While the company has long been an exporter of ferrous scrap, its managers says the with the downturn in the scrap market over the past several years SA Recycling has been looking for opportunities to increase its volumes and expand its business.
“Iron ore was a natural addition to our product line,” says George Adams, SA Recycling’s CEO. “Many of our existing customers use iron ore in their melts, and the capability to load either straight loads of iron ore, or mixed loads of ore and scrap steel gives SA a unique opportunity to be a full service provider to our customer base.”
The Long Beach facility can receive and unload a train of 90 railcars in one day, equal to around 10,000 tons of iron ore on average. In addition, the company says it can load an ocean-going vessel with up to 60,000 tons of iron ore in less than three days.
The iron ore to be exported from SA’s Long Beach facility is currently sourced from mines in California and Utah, although the company is looking to source iron ore from Nevada mines as well.
Adams cites the Asian steel industry’s continuing need for iron ore as a reason why many mines in the southwestern U.S. that were previously closed have once again become viable businesses. Based on that demand, Adams says the iron ore business is a natural direction for the company to go. “SA has always been a leader of innovation in the scrap industry” he says. “With this venture we hope to continue our philosophy of redefining recycling.”
The company will use the Port of Long Beach to ship its iron ore and it will continue to use its terminal facility at the Port of Long Angeles to ship scrap metal.