Salzgitter AG, a German steelmaker, received two confirmation statements based on the VERIsteel process from TÜV SÜD (a testing and certification organisation), enabling the detection of product-specific CO2 emissions in steel production.
The testing agency has verified the accounting process for two process routes to produce flat steel by taking into account all relevant operations and material flows.
When switched from the conventional blast furnace (BF) route to the electric steel (EAF) route, a reduction of more than 75% in the CO2 balance of the slab is achieved. And even going further downstream, over 66% in the CO2 balance of the hot-dip galvanised (HDG) coil is achieved.
Reiner Block, CEO of the Industry Service Division, TÜV SÜD AG, said, “standardisation is a prerequisite for the comparability of processes and products.”
Ulrich Grethe, Chairman of the Management Board of Salzgitter Flachstahl GmbH, said, “We are the first European manufacturer with a declaration of conformity for green steel products.”
Mr Grethe further added that this innovation project enables us to completely convert conventional steel production to hydrogen- and natural gas-based processes, reducing CO2 emissions by up to 95%.”
The company has been pursuing a decarbonisation path through SALCOS (SAlzgitter Low CO2-Steelmaking), which aims o reduce emission by 95%. In late 2020, Salzgitter produced its first low CO2 green steel slab in the Peine steel mill, with a 75% less carbon footprint than the conventional steel route.
In December 2020, as a part of the GrInHy2.0 research project, Salzgitter Flachstahl installed the world’s largest high-temperature electrolyser, generating a nominal output of 720 kWel with the capacity of 200 Nm³ of hydrogen/hour. The plan is to use green hydrogen for its annealing processes by substituting it with hydrogen from natural gas. The green hydrogen can also be supplied to the company DRI plant which is expected to come online next year.
Salzgitter is not the only steelmaker in Europe trying to certify its steel; other steelmakers are also under pressure from both watchdogs and customers. ArcelorMittal Europe is offering green flat steel products using an independent auditor, DNV GL. Customers can use these certificates to report carbon reduction in their Scope 3 emissions. It provided details of its green steel solutions by supplying 30k tonnes of green steel in 2020, with a target of 120k million tonnes for 2021 and 600k tones by 2022, with achieving net-zero targets by 2050. Hydrogen remained the cornerstone in its decarbonisation strategy.