Recent environmental regulations have resulted in an increased effort for retrofits of industrial facilities. Besides energy and emissions, the minimisation of the water consumption is one of main goals as water is becoming more and more limited. Steel industry represents a chain of industrial processes, in which a vast amount of water is consumed and degraded. The paper concerns with possibilities for the reduction of the water consumption in the steel industry. The analysis is performed from two points of view: an overall insight into involved processes, and an identification of technical ways applicable for the minimisation of the water consumption in continuous steel casting. Results indicate that though coking and ironmaking are the most water-demanding tasks, there are also ways for minimisation of the water use in the casting process. Optimal arrangement and design of cooling nozzles allow for 10–20 % reduction, while the use of nanofluids in spray cooling seems to be a more effective way allowing for about 70 % reduction of the water consumption.