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A photo of our Cannington operation at dusk



Lead is a heavy metal that is now mainly used in batteries. 

Our Cannington operation in Queensland, Australia has grown to become the world’s largest and lowest cost producer of lead - producing seven per cent of the world’s lead.

Key stats

101.7 KT

Lead production in FY23

Key uses of lead

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Radiation and corrosive shielding

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Renewable energy storage

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Today, lead is mainly used in batteries. Rechargeable lead-acid batteries are widely used in the automotive industry for starting cars, and they also being used in electric vehicles. Lead-acid batteries are also used in a range of contexts to support and store energy from various renewable energy technologies.

Lead also has important medical and industrial uses as a shield for radiation and a container for corrosive liquids, among other uses.

Producing lead

South32 produces lead at our Cannington operation in Queensland, Australia. Cannington is one of the world's largest lead producers.