Being terrestrial is one obvious requirement. No fully aquatic species could master fire and thus develop metallurgy.
Without this ensemble of fitness in nature, there would be no wood, no fire, no metallurgy, no modern technology.
The mechanism represents a unique and stunningly brilliant solution to the problem of raising water to the top of large trees.
Clearly, unless water can be drawn several meters up the conduits in their tree trunks, large woody trees would be impossible.
Without lignin, there would be no woody plants, no wood, no coal, no charcoal, no fire, no pottery, and certainly no iron or metallurgy.