Ferrous Chloride Supply Chain - Executive Summary

Ferrous Chloride

Direct Use Chemical p-ecursor Chemical

FeCI2

(liquid, solid)

Inputs to Manufacturing Process:
Hydrochloric Acid	Iron Oxides

Iron

Derivative Water Treatment Chemicals:

Ferric Chloride

^ % of Total Domestic Consumption
Attributed to Water Sector:

Greater than 10%

/o\ Understanding Chemical Supply Chains
Map of Suppliers & Manufacturers

A. Product Family:
Chlor-alkali
Iron

CAS No.: 7758-94-3

2 Shelf Life:
12+ Months

 RISK OF SUPPLY DISRUPTION (Assessed in 2022)

RISK RATING: Moderate-Low

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RISK DRIVERS

Production of ferrous chloride
depends on the steel industry and
chlor-alkali industry to produce
manufacturing inputs. Unplanned
and planned reductions in chlor-
alkali production capacity and
decreased demand for steel have
reduced the supply of ferrous
chloride.

RISK PARAMETERS

Criticality: High. Essential for
coagulation and dewatering.

Likelihood: High. Previous
regional disruptions in supply and
significant price fluctuations that
impacted the water sector.

Vulnerability: Low. Distributed
domestic manufacturing and
supply.

MANUFACTURING PROCESS

Water Treatment Applications

Iron Oxides

Iron

Ferrous Chloride

Hydrochloric Acid

Input

End Use

Coagulation
Sludge dewatering
Odor control

Other Applications

Textile dyeing
Metallurgy
Paint formulation

DOMESTIC PRODUCTION AND CONSUMPTION, AND INTERNATIONAL TRADE

Domestic Manufacturing Locations (2015):
8, distributed throughout the U.S.

(^) International Trade (2019)

Primary Trading Partner (Imports): Canada
Primary Trading Partner (Exports): Thailand

Domestic Consumption (2019):

96 M kg

	Domestic Production (69 M kg)

	Imports for Consumption (28 M kg)

	Export of Domestic Production (0.20 M kg)

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Ferrous Chloride Supply Chain - Full Profile

Product Description

Ferrous chloride (FeCI2), an inorganic iron salt, is a widely used coagulant, dewatering agent, and odor control
agent. It is primarily produced as a byproduct of steel pickling, a process that relies on iron oxides and
hydrochloric acid. Water treatment applications are the primary commercial use of ferrous chloride in the U.S.

Use in Water Treatment

Ferrous chloride is used as a coagulant in both wastewater and drinking water treatment and as a sludge
dewatering and odor control agent (NCBI, 2021).

Use as a Precursor to Other Water Treatment Chemicals
Ferrous chloride is used to manufacture ferric chloride.

Other Applications

Ferrous chloride is used for textile dyeing, metallurgy, paint formulation, and as a chemical intermediate (NCBI,
2021).

Primary Industrial Consumers

Ferrous chloride is primarily used for wastewater treatment.

Manufacturing, Transport, & Storage

Manufacturing Process

Iron, iron oxides, and hydrochloric acid are the primary materials used to produce ferrous chloride. The method
most commonly used in North America utilizes a reaction of spent steel pickling liquors or scrap iron with
hydrochloric acid. Pickling of steel removes the surface iron oxide from steel by immersion in a bath containing
either a sulfuric or hydrochloric acid solution. When hydrochloric acid is used, mixed oxides in the oxidation
layer of the steel as well as the underlying iron react with the hydrochloric acid to form ferrous chloride as
shown in Figure 1. Ferrous chloride is then filtered and crystallized (Alcaraz et al., 2021; Michigan DEQ, 2015;
Ozdemir, et. al, 2006).

Reaction of Mixed Iron Oxides (Fe203, Fe304, and FeO) and Steel with Hydrochloric Acid

Iron Oxide

+ Steel + Hydrochloric Acid > Ferrous Chloride +

Water

Fe203

+ Fe + 6HCI -> 3FeCI2 +

3H20

Iron Oxide

+ Steel + Hydrochloric Acid > Ferrous Chloride +

Water

Fe304

+ Fe + 8HCI -> 4FeCI2 +

4H20

Iron Oxide

+ Hydrochloric Acid > Ferrous Chloride + Water



FeO

+ 2HCI -> FeCI2 + H20



Iron + Hydrochloric Acid > Ferrous Chloride + Hydrogen



Fe +

2HCI -> FeCI2 + H2



Figure 1. Chemical Equation for the Reaction to Manufacture Ferrous Chloride

Product Transport

Ferrous chloride may be transported in bulk or container by truck, rail, barge, and ship (Kemira, 2010; SafeRack,
2022).

EPA 817-F-22-026 | December 2022

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Ferrous Chloride Supply Chain - Full Profile

Storage and Shelf Life

Ferrous chloride is corrosive, and should be stored in corrosion-resistant container. Ferrous chloride should be
kept in a cool, dry area. When stored properly, ferrous chloride can have a shelf life in excess of 12 months
(Kemira, 2010; Poly Processing, 2017).

Domestic Production & Consumption

Domestic Production

Production data was collected from the 2020 Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Chemical Data Reporting
(CDR) for the year 2019, while trade data was collected from the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC)
Dataweb, as shown in Table 1. While production data is specific to ferrous chloride, trade data includes ferrous
chloride as part of the trade category for iron chlorides.

Table 1. Ferrous Chloride Production and Trade Data Sources

Production and Trade Data

Category

Data Source

Identifier

Description

Domestic Production

2020 TSCA Chemical Data Reporting

CAS No.: 7758-94-3

Ferrous Chloride

Imports and Exports

U.S. International Trade Commission

HTS Code: 827.39.55

Iron Chlorides, including
Ferrous Chloride

Total U.S. domestic manufacturing of ferrous chloride reported under the CDR was approximately 96 million
kilograms (M kg) in 2019 (EPA, 2020). Domestic commercial manufacture of ferrous chloride takes place at a
limited number of facilities throughout the contiguous U.S. Primary producers include NMLK Group (steel
manufacturer) and Phibro-Tech (iron manufacturer and recycler). Most ferrous chloride production facilities rely
on the availability of hydrochloric acid are associated with the steel industry. The number of domestic
manufacturing locations shown in Figure 2 represents operating facilities as of 2015 (EPA, 2016). Supply of
NSF/ANSI Standard 60 certified ferrous chloride for use in drinking water treatment is distributed throughout
the U.S. (NSF International, 2021). For a more current listing of manufacturing locations and supplier locations,
visit the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) Chemical Locator Tool (EPA, 2022a).

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Ferrous Chloride Supply Chain - Full Profile

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Domestic Supply and Manufacturing of Ferrous Chloride
O 17 NSF/ANSI Standard 60 Certified Suppliers (NSF International, 2021)
0 8 Domestic Manufacturing Locations (EPA Chemical Data Reporting, 2016)

Figure 2. Domestic Supply and Manufacturing of Ferrous Chloride
Domestic Consumption

U.S. consumption of ferrous chloride in 2019 is an estimate based on production of ferrous chloride and trade of
a broader category of iron chlorides. Trade of ferrous chloride is an unknown percentage of import and export
volume in this category. This estimate includes production of 96 M kg, import of 28 M kg, minus export of 0.20
M kg (EPA, 2020; USITC, 2021), as shown in Figure 3.

Domestic Consumption (2019):

M kg

Domestic	(69 M kg)

	Imports for Consumption (28 M kg)

	Export of Domestic Production (0.20 M kg)

Figure 3. Domestic Production and Consumption of Ferrous Chloride in 2019

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Ferrous Chloride Supply Chain - Full Profile

Trade & Tariffs

Worldwide Trade

Worldwide import and export data for ferrous chloride are reported through the World Bank's World Integrated
Trade Solutions (WITS), as a category representing metal chlorides of tin, barium, iron, cobalt, and zinc. In 2021,
the U.S. ranked 14th worldwide in total exports and 8th in total imports of metal chlorides. In 2021, Germany
ranked first worldwide in total exports (WITS, 2022), as shown in Table 2. Import and export data specific to
ferrous chloride are unavailable from the referenced sources.

Table 2. WITS Worldwide Export and Import of Metal Chlorides, Including Ferrous Chloride in 2021

2021 Worldwide Trade
Metal Chlorides of Tin, Barium, Iron, Cobalt, Zinc (HS Code 2827.39)

Top 5 Worldwide Exporters

Top 5 Worldwide Importers

Germany

194 M kg

Netherlands

79 M kg

China

110 M kg

France

78 M kg

France

84 M kg

India

76 M kg

Belgium

79 M kg

Belgium

75 M kg

India

71 M kg

Germany

69 M kg

Domestic Imports and Exports

Domestic imports and export data are reported by USITC in categories inclusive of all iron chlorides. Figure 4
summarizes imports for consumption1 and domestic exports2 of iron chlorides between 2015 and 2020. During
this period, the overall quantity of imports grew steadily. The overall quantity of exports was much smaller than
the quantity of imports, with average values of 0.4 M kg and 19.2 M kg, respectively. Over this five-year period,
Thailand was the primary recipient of domestic exports while Canada was the primary source of imports (USITC,
2021).

1	Imports for consumption are a subset of general imports, representing the total amount cleared through customs and entering
consumption channels, not anticipated to be reshipped to foreign points, but may include some reexports.

2	Domestic exports are a subset of total exports, representing export of domestic merchandise which are produced or manufactured in
the U.S. and commodities of foreign origin which have been changed in the U.S.

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Ferrous Chloride Supply Chain - Full Profile

30

Domestic Trade of Iron Chlorides
HTS Code 2827.39.55

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2016

2017

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	Imports from Canada	 Exports to Thailand

	Imports from Germany	 Exports to Kuwait

	Imports from Other Countries	Exports to Other Countries

Figure 4. USITC Domestic Import and Export of Iron Chlorides between 2015 and 2020

Tariffs

There is a 3.7% general duty for import ferrous chloride and an additional 25% duty on imports from China
(USITC, 2022), as summarized in Table 3.

Table 3. 2021 Domestic Tariff Schedule for Iron Chlorides

HTS Number

General Duty

Additional Duty-China
(Section 301 Tariff List)

Special Duty

2827.39.55

3.7%

25%

Free for A, AU, BH, CA, CL, CO, D, E, IL, JO, KR,
MA, MX, OM, P, PA, PE, SG3

Market History & Risk Evaluation

History of Shortages

The production of ferrous chloride in North America is heavily reliant on the steel industry and availability of
hydrochloric acid. Economic slowdowns and a drop in domestic steel manufacturing along with greater recycling
of steel pickling liquor and fluctuating prices for hydrochloric acid have been known to impact the availability of
ferrous chloride.

Risk Evaluation

The complete risk assessment methodology is described in Understanding Water Treatment Chemical Supply
Chains and the Risk of Disruptions (EPA, 2022b). The risk rating is calculated as the product of the following three
risk parameters:

3 Symbols used to designate the various preference programs and trade agreements. A full list of special trade agreements and
associated acronyms can be found at https://help.cbp.eov/s/article/Article-310?laneuaee=en US and the General Notes Section of the
Harmonized Tariff Schedule https://hts.usitc.eov/current

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Ferrous Chloride Supply Chain - Full Profile

Risk = Criticality x Likelihood x Vulnerability

Criticality	Measure of the importance of a chemical to the water sector

Likelihood Measure of the probability that the chemical will experience a supply disruption in the
future, which is estimated based on past occurrence of supply disruptions

Vulnerability Measure of the market dynamics that make a chemical market more or less resilient to
supply disruptions

The individual parameter rating is based on evaluation of one or more attributes of the chemical or its supply
chain. The ratings and drivers for these three risk parameters are shown below in Table 4.

Table 4. Supply Chain Risk Evaluation for Ferrous Chloride

Risk Parameter Ratings and Drivers





i

1 Criticality High

1 Likelihood

High 1

1 Vulnerability Low 1

Ferrous chloride is an essential water
treatment chemical. It is widely used
as a coagulant and sludge dewatering
agent.

The water sector has experienced
regional ferrous chloride supply
disruptions and significant price
fluctuations in the past. Lack of supply
of key inputs (steel pickling liquor and
chlorine and hydrochloric acid)
contributed to a shortage in 2021.

Strong domestic manufacturing
capabilities and a distributed
manufacturing base provide some
resilience to supply disruptions.
However, the reliance on supply from
both the chlor-alkali and steel
industries increases vulnerability.

Risk Rating: Moderate-Low

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References

Alcaraz, L., Sotillo, B., Marco, J.F., Alguacil, F.J., Fernandez, P. and Lopez, F.A., 2021. Obtention and

Characterization of Ferrous Chloride FeCI2- 4H20 from Water Pickling Liquors. Materials, 14(17): 4840.

EPA, 2016. 2016 TSCA Chemical Data Reporting, retrieved from https://www.epa.gov/chemical-data-
reporting/access-cdr-data#2016

EPA, 2020. 2020 TSCA Chemical Data Reporting, retrieved from https://www.epa.gov/chemical-data-
reporting/access-cdr-data#2020

EPA, 2022a. Chemical Suppliers and Manufacturers Locator Tool, retrieved from

https://www.epa.gov/waterutilitvresponse/chemical-suppliers-and-manufacturers-locator-tool

EPA, 2022b. Understanding Water Treatment Chemical Supply Chains and the Risk of Disruptions, retrieved
from https://www.epa.gov/waterutilitvresponse/risk-disruptions-supplv-water-treatment-chemicals

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Ferrous Chloride Supply Chain - Full Profile

Kemira Water Solutions, 2010. Safety Data Sheet for Ferrous Chloride, retrieved from

https://www.regionalsan.com/sites/main/files/file-attachments/liquid sulfide msds.pdf?1413575978

Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ), 2015. Activity Report: Scheduled Inspection, retrieved
from http://www.deq.state.mi.us/Aps/downloads/SRN/B2371/B2371 SAR 20150826.pdf

National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), 2021. PubChem Compound Summary for CID 24458,
Ferrous chloride, retrieved from https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/Ferrous-chloride

NSF International, 2021. Search for NSF Certified Drinking Water Treatment Chemicals, retrieved from
https://info.nsf.org/Certified/PwsChemicals/

Ozdemir, T., Oztin C., and Kincal, N, 2006. Treatment of waste pickling liquors: Process synthesis and
economic analysis. Chemical Engineering Communications, 193(5): 548-563.

Poly Processing, 2017. "Be Sure Your Ferrous Chloride Storage Tanks Are Up to the Task." Poly Processing
Website, April 27, 2017 [Blog], retrieved from https://blog.polyprocessing.com/blog/ferrous-chloride-
storage-tanks

SafeRack, 2022. Ferrous Chloride (FeCI2) Handling Design, Loading, and Installation, retrieved from
https://www.saferack.com/bulk-chemical/ferrous-

chloride/#:~:text=Ferrous%20chloride%20is%20tvpically%20shipped.off%2Dset%20crash%20box%20op
enings

U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC), 2021. USITC DataWeb, retrieved from
https://dataweb.usitc.gov/

U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC), 2022. Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) Search, retrieved from
https://hts.usitc.gov/

World Integrated Trade Solutions, 2022. Trade Statistics by Product (HS 6-digit), retrieved from
https://wits.worldbank.org/trade/countrv-bvhs6product.aspx?lang=en#void

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