Global steel producer Nippon will substantially advance its spending in research and development to fast-track the decarbonization process during steelmaking.
The Japanese steelmaker plans to supply additional details later this month. The company has encountered growing pressure, along with steelmakers in Europe and China, to address climate change by reducing carbon emissions, according to media reports. Steel mills in Japan make up 14pc of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in the country.
The steelmaker is looking at ways to expand electric arc furnace (EAF) usage, which currently stands at only 24pc in Japan, with the remainder of steel mills’ output produced by blast furnaces, the largest source of carbon emissions. Comparatively, the US produced about 70pc of steel in 2019 through the EAF method.
Nippon also plans to accelerate hydrogen use in iron ore reduction to capture carbon emissions and enhance storage methods. Replacing about 40pc of metallurgical coal use along with CO2 capture may make it possible for the company to retain the blast furnace steelmaking method.
The 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change involves cutting global greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2050. Nippon and other local companies have been collaborating on creating iron ore reduction technology that uses hydrogen in blast furnaces so that CO2 emissions may be cut 30pc by 2030.
According to reports, the steel producer also expects the government to help by creating a plan that will offer low-cost, carbon-free electricity.