U.S. Steel Industry Salutes Our Men and Women in Uniform

Working to Provide Vital Equipment for Soldiers

WASHINGTON, D.C., November 11, 2009 – In recognition of Veterans Day, the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) salutes U.S. veterans for their noble service in preserving America’s national security.  Every day members of the United States armed forces – the Navy, Marine Corps, Army, Air Force and Coast Guard – risk their lives in order to preserve America’s freedom and national security. Our veterans represent the best of America and the U.S. steel industry is proud to work day in and day out to serve the military in their efforts to defend our nation.

This Veterans Day, steel has a particularly prominent place in the hearts of Americans with the official commissioning of a new Naval vessel, the USS New York, which has 7.5 tons of steel cast into the bow of the ship, steel which was recovered from the World Trade Center after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.   
“Virtually every segment of the domestic steel industry contributes in some way to the defense sector.  And every piece of our national defense infrastructure involves steel,” said Thomas J. Gibson, president and CEO of AISI.  “AISI and its member companies want to acknowledge the pride the steel industry takes in ensuring national security and the safety of our men and women in uniform.”

Thousands of skilled men and women of the U.S. steel industry work to produce high quality, cost-competitive products containing anywhere from twenty to one million tons of steel that are used by the military in various applications ranging from aircraft carriers and nuclear submarines to Patriot and Stinger missiles. An aircraft carrier, for example, requires approximately 50,000 tons of steel plate.   In addition, land based vehicles such as the Bradley Fighting Vehicle, Abrams Tank and the family of Light Armored Vehicles utilize significant tonnage of steel plate per vehicle, with the Abrams Tank alone consuming about 22 tons of steel plate in each vehicle.   

Another excellent example is the mine-resistant ambush-protected vehicles (MRAP vehicles) that have emerged in recent years and play an essential role in properly equipping and protecting U.S. troops in parts of the world such as Iraq and Afghanistan.  The special armored steels and mild steels are produced and developed here in America.

Hand in hand with steel’s military applications, nearly every element of essential infrastructure in the United States – including transportation, energy, health, public safety, and buildings – are dependent upon steel for both their construction and their security.    These critical applications require consistent, high quality domestic sources of supply.

“If the U.S. is to maintain its strategic capability to produce steel, which is integral to our nation’s national and economic security, it must pursue policies that encourage continued investment in the United States in transportation, energy infrastructure, manufacturing and technology,” said Gibson.

The U.S. steel industry's continued ability to supply the nation’s homeland security and national defense needs is dependent on it remaining competitive in the global steel marketplace. Without the U.S. steel industry, the military would lose its primary domestic source of strategic metals. With the desire never to be dependent on foreign nations for the steel used in military applications, AISI urges that U.S. trade laws be defended, strengthened and enforced so that American-made steel can continue to play a vital role in national security.

AISI serves as the voice of the North American steel industry in the public policy arena and advances the case for steel in the marketplace as the preferred material of choice.  AISI also plays a lead role in the development and application of new steels and steelmaking technology.  AISI is comprised of 24 member companies, including integrated and electric furnace steelmakers, and 138 associate and affiliate members who are suppliers to or customers of the steel industry.  AISI's member companies represent approximately 75 percent of both U.S. and North American steel capacity.  For more news about steel and its applications, view AISI’s Web site at www.steel.org.

Nancy Gravatt
Vice President, Communications
American Iron and Steel Institute
Tel: 202.452.7115