Chinese steel producers have been under severe pressure to reduce carbon emission given steel industry is one of the significant contributors to the country pollution. Some large steel mills are incorporating hydrogen in their climate and sustainability strategies to help reduce carbon footprint.
China Baowu Steel Group, one of world top steelmaker, has recently bought 60 heavy-duty hydrogen-powered trucks. The 42-tonnes semi-trailers heavy trucks are produced by Suzhou Jinlong. These are the first batch of hydrogen trucks and will run as a part of the pilot project. H2 Bulletin has learned that these trucks are likely to be using Toyota fuel cell technology.
Baowu has started showing keen interest in the hydrogen industry recently. It also signed a strategic contract with SAIC Motor in July 2020 to work on various areas related to the hydrogen business such as hydrogen energy, steel for the auto sector and supply chain. Both companies also decided to build around 20 hydrogen refuelling stations in Baoshan, Shanghai.
Baowu is also working to reduce emission from its steel business unit. It started a special hydrogen project to speed up its transition away from metallurgical coal. It is exploring a way to produce steel through the direct reduced iron approach by using hydrogen as a reductant. Sweden’s SSAB has also been working separately on similar technology and aims to make steel using hydrogen in a pilot project by 2025.
Baowu already partnered with Rio Tinto, one of the world’s largest iron ore producers, to explore ways to reduce steel production emissions. Last year, Baowu also signed a deal with Linde, a leading industrial gases supplier, to help develop infrastructure for transporting and storing liquid hydrogen in China.