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‘First fossil-free metal’ produced in Sweden, delivered to Volvo

Steel manufacturing is one in all many industrial processes ripe for enchancment in the case of emissions.

Henrik Kettunen | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Sweden’s SSAB says it has “produced the world’s first fossil-free steel” and has began delivering it to the Volvo Group, its first buyer.

The information represents the newest improvement for the Hybrit venture, which was arrange in 2016 and is owned by SSAB, power agency Vattenfall and LKAB, a mining and minerals group. Both Vattenfall and LKAB are owned by the Swedish state. The thought underpinning Hybrit is to make use of “100% fossil-free hydrogen” moderately than coal and coke in metal manufacturing.

In an announcement on Wednesday, SSAB known as the trial supply “an important step on the way to a completely fossil-free value chain for iron- and steelmaking.”

Looking forward, the aim is to develop the expertise so it may be demonstrated at an industrial scale. It’s hoped this might occur as early as 2026.

“The first fossil-free steel in the world is not only a breakthrough for SSAB, it represents proof that it’s possible to make the transition and significantly reduce the global carbon footprint of the steel industry,” Martin Lindqvist, SSAB’s president and CEO, mentioned.

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Steel manufacturing is one in all many industrial processes ripe for enchancment in the case of emissions and different metrics associated to sustainability. The problem is an enormous one, nonetheless.

According to the International Energy Agency, the iron and metal sector is liable for 2.6 gigatonnes of direct carbon dioxide emissions annually. In 2019, this determine was larger than the direct emissions from sectors comparable to cement and chemical compounds.

The IEA provides that the metal sector is “the largest industrial consumer of coal, which provides around 75% of its energy demand.”

Hybrit will not be the one venture seeking to mitigate the consequences of metal manufacturing. Another, H2 Green Steel, plans to construct a metal manufacturing facility within the north of Sweden that might be powered by a “green” hydrogen plant.

Back in February the Swedish agency, which is backed by traders together with Spotify founder Daniel Ek, mentioned manufacturing would begin in 2024 and be primarily based within the nation’s Norrbotten area. By 2030, the purpose is for the enterprise to have the capability to provide 5 million tons of metal per yr.

Hydrogen might be produced in a lot of methods. One technique consists of utilizing electrolysis, with an electrical present splitting water into oxygen and hydrogen.

If the electrical energy used within the course of comes from a renewable supply comparable to wind or photo voltaic then it is termed “green” or “renewable” hydrogen.

As properly as metal manufacturing, aluminum manufacturing is one other sector the place renewables might have a task to play.

Earlier this yr German automaker BMW mentioned it had began to source and use aluminum produced using solar energy.

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