Energy and CO2
ArcelorMittal Gent produces steel via the blast furnace route. This is, by definition, an energy-intensive process. The different production steps, like for instance the coking plant, the sinter plants and blast furnaces, require a certain amount of (process)time and a considerate amount of fossil fuels. The rolling of steel slabs, in addition, demands a large quantity of electricity. Yet we at ArcelorMittal Gent manage to belong to the top achievers of the world when it comes down to our energy-efficiency. This thanks to our continuous (environmental) efforts.
Energy efficiency is a must
It is important to be thrifty with energy both for ecological as economical reasons. On company level, the energy costs account for a large share of our total production cost per ton of steel. On a social point of view, we are confronted with the greenhouse effect and climate warming. Both are directly linked to energy consumption. We are thus obliged to ourselves and to the coming generations, to produce steel with as less energy consumption as possible.
In 30 years time, we have therefore reduced the energy consumption used per ton of steel by around 30%. This is the direct result of our thought-through energy policy. On the one hand we invest in our installations and processes to reduce the energy consumption. On the other, we aim to re-utilize the used energy where technically and economically possible.
Energy achievement on top level
In 2003, ArcelorMittal Gent voluntarily became part of the ‘Benchmark convenant of energy efficiency in the industry’. By doing so we committed ourselves to be part of the top achievers of the world when it comes down to the efficient consumption of energy.
To determine the top achievers of energy consumption, a fictional company utilising the most energy efficient production installations of steel plants worldwide was created as a reference. A company belongs to the top achievers of the world, when its energy consumption does not exceed the reference company’s consumption by 10%. This benchmark proved that ArcelorMittal Gent belongs to the top energy efficient achievers of the world.
CO2 emissions, the challenge of the future
As CO2 emissions are closely correlated to the consumption of energy, all efforts we undertake to improve our energy consumption automatically lead to a reduction in the emitted greenhouse gases.
A least 75% of the CO2 emission of ArcelorMittal Gent is the direct result of the chemical processes that take place in the blast furnace. In order to reduce the CO2 blast furnace emission, we aim to continuously limit the required amount of carbon used in all our production processes. This by optimising the processes as well as by choosing the correct raw materials.
Thanks to our well-performing blast furnaces and the high energy efficiency in our entire company, we are able to approach the theoretical minimum emission produced in the steel industry.
However, certain CO2 emissions do remain an important challenge for the European steel industry. That is why, together with other steel plants ArcelorMittal continuously performs research on technologies that will allow us to further reduce our CO2 emissions.