Novelis Inc., headquartered in Atlanta, has begun construction on its $2.5 billion recycling and rolling plant in Bay Minette, Alabama. The facility is expected to create up to 1,000 new jobs and add 600,000 tons of finished aluminum goods capacity per year for the beverage container market, with the flexibility for automotive production, the company says. It also will add a new recycling center for used beverage cans (UBCs), increasing Novelis’ recycling capacity from 74 billion UBCs to 90 million annually.
The company says the facility will be the first fully integrated aluminum mill built in the U.S. in 40 years.
Novelis welcomed nearly 200 attendees to its Oct. 7 groundbreaking celebration, including Gov. Kay Ivey, Congressman Jerry Carl and several local leaders and community representatives.
"Through this investment, we want to demonstrate the strength of our growing customer partnerships, the commitment we have to sustainably grow our business and the innovative, forward-thinking approach we are taking to modern manufacturing," said Steve Fisher, president and CEO of Novelis, during the groundbreaking. "We are especially proud to celebrate our groundbreaking of this state-of-the-art facility on National Manufacturing Day, which highlights the exciting career opportunities available in our industry."
Novelis says it has hired its core leadership team to lead the multiyear effort to build the facility and is recruiting for open roles in engineering, maintenance, finance, human resources and information technology. Interested candidates can visit www.novelis.com/careers to search for available positions or submit their resumes for consideration as additional roles become available.
Within the next three months, the company says it will build two new roadways on-site and expand the utility infrastructure necessary to begin building construction. Commissioning of the facility is scheduled for mid-2025.
Novelis says it selected a leading engineering company as its site layout, engineering and construction contractor, an Alabama-based firm to serve as earthworks contractor and several manufacturing equipment providers that have longstanding relationships with Novelis across the world.
According to a previous announcement from Novelis, the facility will have several environmental features and will aim to be net carbon neutral for Scope 1 and 2 emissions. It will be powered primarily by renewable energy, use recycled water and be a zero-waste facility. Additionally, the plant will rely on rail transportation, which can reduce logistics-related carbon emissions by up to 70 percent compared with over-the-road transport.
"Today marks an important milestone for our Novelis team as we ramp up construction and grow our team," said Tom Boney, executive vice president and President of Novelis North America, at the groundbreaking ceremony. "We seek to become an integral part of this community, contributing to the local economy and advancing residents' quality of life every step of the way.
"We are grateful for the support we have received from the state, Baldwin County, Bay Minette and other partners as we build our home here in Alabama," he added.
During the groundbreaking ceremony, Boney also announced the company's plans to invest $150,000 in south Alabama nonprofit organizations over the next six months.
Novelis says it also encouraged attendees to recycle their beverage cans and cups at the event in partnership with Mobile Coca-Cola Bottling Co. To encourage recycling throughout the community, Novelis has launched a partnership with Baldwin County to provide recycling bins and education at all county-owned buildings. The company says it plans to invest in additional opportunities to encourage and incentivize Alabamans to recycle more often.
The Bay Minette groundbreaking follows the company’s May groundbreaking in Guthrie, Kentucky, on a $365 million investment in an advanced recycling center that will be able to cast 240,000 tons of sheet ingot for its automotive customers per year.
Novelis is a subsidiary of Hindalco Industries Ltd., an industry leader in aluminum and copper and the metals flagship company of the Aditya Birla Group, a multinational conglomerate based in Mumbai, India.