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Smart carbon in the steel industry

Carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS), often called carbon capture, it is the process of capturing carbon dioxide emissions from industrial facilities and reusing or storing them.

Considering the urgency to reduce by half the CO2 emission by 2030,

carbon capture is expected to contribute 27% of the needed emissions reductions in the cement, iron, steel and chemicals industries.

Energy accounts for two-thirds of total greenhouse gas. According to IEA report, in 2021 CO2 emissions rebounded strongly showing a “implementation gap” between announced net zero pledges and the policy frameworks and specific measures that they require.

Vertical scale : Gt CO2 Horizontal: Years source: IEA WEO-2021

Heavy industries are embracing carbon capture technology as a mean to meet the climat change agenda. More than 100 new facilities were announced in 2021. CCUS facilities currently capture more than 40 Mt CO2 annually,

In the steel industry, ArcelorMittal, the largest steel manufacturer in the Americas and Europe is developping its smart carbon steelmaking route.

Governments across the globe are supporting carbon capture using carbon capture tax credits and large investments in related technologies.

The future is promising for carbon capture solutions with strong industry engagement, government support and innovative supply chain solutions.

230 Mt of CO2 are currently used each year, mainly in direct use pathways in the fertiliser industry for urea manufacturing (~130 Mt) and for enhanced oil recovery (~80 Mt). New utilisation pathways in the production of CO2-based synthetic fuels, chemicals and building aggregates are gaining momentum.

About the urgency

The World Energy Outlook-2021 report (WEO-2021) prepared by IEA for the COP26 in Glasgow, show a "picture" of how far countries have come in their clean energy transitions. The finding is alarming as 'the global average temperature rise in this scenario passes the 1.5 degrees Celsius (°C) mark around 2030 and would still be climbing as it reaches 2.6 °C in 2100.'

IEA has produced an interesting tables showing selected indicators in the Net Zero Emissions by 2050 Scenario reflecting the effort to reach the 1.5 degree Celsius stabilisation.

Critical minerals

Critical metals are indispensable to energy transition, but on the other hand they could also slow global progress towards a clean energy future or make it more costly. The importance to secure a sustainable supply is key and all actors in this space should engage their responsibility and conduct appropriate policies.

Among scenarios and particularly the NZE (Net Zero Emission 2050), the presence of critical minerals in global resources trade is set to increase very significantly with the rise of clean energy. On a refined product basis, the

value of key critical minerals is estimated to triple by 2050 to USD 400 billion (International Energy Agency, World Energy Outlook 2021, p282).

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