Energy is a critical resource for Alcoa due to the energy-intensive nature of our refining and smelting processes.

Securing low-cost and competitively priced energy with minimal environmental impact is a focal point of our long-term energy strategy. We also work to reduce the amount of energy we consume through operational efficiency and technological advances, which lower our costs and GHG emissions.

We have defined short- and long-term energy reduction targets for all of our operations that are integrated in our overall GHG emissions reduction target. These targets will be realized through process and energy-efficiency performance and our long-term portfolio strategy.

As part of our commitment to climate protection, we have criteria to evaluate energy consumption and sources of energy as part of our process to consider any potential new projects or major expansions. This allows us to maintain a cohesive portfolio of operations aligned with our long-term goals.

We also consider carbon-related impacts in our capital expenditure process when developing the business case for the financial model used in capital allocation decision-making. Projects that impact carbon emissions (positively or negatively) are considered throughout the approval process and project development.

Our energy intensity decreased by 0.4 percent in 2021 compared to the prior year. Our overall energy consumption also decreased by 7.1 million gigajoules, or 2.1 percent, in the same period. Key factors behind the performance are fully started Bécancour smelter in Canada, and the curtailment of the Intalco smelter in the United States.

Energy Intensity

2021 Energy by Source

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2021 Energy by Source

Other renewables include geothermal, biomass, solar and wind energy.
Source Direct Purchased Electricity
Thousands of Gigajoules Percent Thousands of Megawatt Hours Percent
Natural Gas 102,264 55.3 3,891 10.1
Hydro 0 0.0 26,170 68.0
Coal 66,800 36.1 2,786 7.2
Oil 11,787 6.4 38 0.0
Other Renewables 107 0.1 3,691 9.6
Diesel 3,663 2.0 1,099 2.9
Nuclear 0 0.0 831 2.2
Propane 118 0.0 0 0.0
Distillates 16 0.1 0 0.0
Local Grid 0 0.0 0 0.0
Total 184,755 100.0 38,507 100.0

Case Study

    The Heat Is Off

    Learn how Alcoa is eliminating energy waste and finding renewable energy sources including solar walls to warm its buildings in Canada.

    Harnessing the Sun’s Power

    With the flick of a switch, our Peel Regional Office in Pinjarra, Australia, got a lot greener when 242 rooftop solar panels came online in March 2020.