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U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2005-3144

Steel Stocks in Use in Automobiles in the United States

The U.S. Geological Survey estimated the quantity of steel stocks in use in the United States to be 4.13 billion metric tons as of 2002. Stocks in use include the steel in airplanes, automobiles, bridges, buildings, household appliances, machinery, and many other applications and exclude steel in solid-waste facilities. Continuous use of steel through recycling, remanufacturing, and reuse allows stocks to be considered a resource in place. The term “steel” is used here to denote carbon steel, galvanized steel, stainless steel, and high-strength low-alloy steel, as well as cast iron and iron.

This Fact Sheet compares all steel stocks in use with steel stocks in use within automobiles in the United States. Automobiles in use in the United States include domestic and imported passenger cars, sports utility vehicles, trucks, light trucks, vans, and minivans in commercial (taxicabs and limousines), government, and private use. Data on vehicles with an average curb weight greater than 8,500 pounds are not included in the Fact Sheet. The curb weight is the total weight of a vehicle without passengers or cargo.

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