Steel For Europe
Steel is the most versatile and sustainable industrial material in the world. It is infinitely recyclable and therefore fundamental for the circular economy within the EU.

EU steel = sustainable steel

Sustainable steel is also manufactured from sustainable source materials fulfilling all legal, environmental and ethical norms. In this respect European steel manufacturing and raw materials sourcing, which are subjected to strict EU environmental constraints guarantee the low-emission steel production development. That is unlike steel manufacturers operating in countries of much looser environmental policies. Transferring steel production to these markets of laxer emission constraints would directly lead to carbon leakage thus increase in total emissions.
Steel manufacturers and companies sourcing raw materials, which operate in the EU constantly reduce their environmental footprint in order to fulfil strict environmental constraints. According to Eurofer steel producers are among the global leaders not only in technology, but also in climate protection. In 2018 ETS emissions from steel production decreased by 7 per cent in comparison with 2013.

As for coking coal mining industry there have been constant reductions of carbon footprint and the greenhouse gases emissions while maintaining the highest levels of quality standards. There are strives for more sustainable business model based on optimization of energy usage, elimination of energy-consuming solutions, recovering and industrial use of methane.

The future of steelmaking — climate neutral steel
Steel producing companies have been conducting intensive research for breakthrough technologies able to reduce CO2 emissions from steelmaking.
  • ULCOS (Ultra-Low Carbon dioxide steelmaking) – the research programme financed by the European steel industry with support from the EU.
  • HYBRIT (Hydrogen Breakthrough Ironmaking Technology) – a joint initiative by SSAB, LKAB and Vattenfall, which aims to have a completely fossil-free process for steel making by 2035.
Although these projects may play an important role in reducing the CO2 emissions of the steelmaking industry in the future, right now there should be a strong focus on protecting the EU based steelmaking industry by addressing top challenges faced by steel producers and connected with:
  • EU climate policy, which profoundly impacts Energy Intensive Industries (increase in the price of the CO2 European Emission Allowances)
  • Higher energy prices compared to most of non-EU international competitors – a result of ambitious EU climate policy (energy costs account for up to 40% of the total operational costs of steelmaking)
  • Trade restrictions imposed by non-EU steel producing countries
  • Limited access to sustainable and quality critical raw materials such as coking coal, which is crucial for steelmaking industry
  • Competition from international producers, which are not subjected to strong environmental constraints