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A push for ‘green’ steel

By Gerald Ondrey |

Last month, the so-called Hybrit initiative (www.hybritdevelopment.com) was given the go-ahead to build a pilot plant for making fossil-free steel. The announcement follows a pre-feasibility study conducted by Swedish partners SSAB AB (Stockholm; www.ssab.com), LKAB (Luleå; www.lkab.com) and Vattenfall AB (Solna; www.vattenfall.com). The partners are looking to invest SEK20 million (about $2.5 million) to plan and design the pilot plant in Northern Sweden. The Swedish Energy Agency will finance parts of the project, and the initiative — which could reduce Sweden’s total CO2 emissions by 10% (and those of Finland by 7%), is said to be crucial if the country is to meet its goals of the Paris Agreement. Currently, coal and coke, which are shipped to Sweden from Australia and other places, are used to reduce iron ore into iron (diagram, left). The idea behind Hybrit is to use H2 instead, which has been produced with electricity from fossil-free Swedish sources (diagram). The pilot plant will be built in Luleå using iron ore deposits from Norrbotten, with construction starting as soon as this summer. The goal is to have a totally fossil-free process for steel production by 2035. SSAB aims to cut its joint CO2 emissions in Sweden…
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