Posts Tagged ‘World Steel Association’

Worldsteel chief: ‘combined solution’ key to climate change

SBB 20 April World Steel Association director general Edwin Basson said all industry – and all industrial nations – must be included in ongoing efforts to curb carbon emissions, not just steel.

Basson, in an address during Platts Steel Business Briefing’s third-annual Green Steel Strategies conference in Berlin, called regulations aimed at reducing so-called tailpipe emissions “nonsensical” and said a life-cycle assessment approach is essential in making future strides.

Worldsteel, whose membership includes 17 of the 20 largest steelmakers in the world, believes the global steel industry is already a key player in moving toward greener industrial output, even as it accounts for just 6.5% of all CO2 production.

Basson pointed to the construction of the Golden Gate Bridge in 1937, which required some 83,000 tonnes of steel. “Today, only half that amount would be needed,” due to advances in stronger, lightweight steels, Basson said, adding that water recycled by steelmakers back into rivers and other bodies of water also is often cleaner than when it was extracted.

“Clearly, it is impossible to solve he climate change issue by focusing on the steel industry,” he said. “The future solution must be a combined solution.” Also, any near-term results gained by reducing steel’s CO2 output will be limited. “This is not going to give us results today or tomorrow. We will not halve carbon emissions in the next five years,” Basson said.

Matthias Finkbeiner, professor of life-cycle analysis at the Berlin Technical University, said “hardly any measure is a silver bullet.”

Finkbeiner said the UK’s total CO2 emissions increased by 19% since 1990, even as its domestic industry reduced overall emissions by 12%. The reason: the UK was a net importer of emissions related to the consumption of products made in other regions not as environmentally conscious.

WorldAutoSteel pushes for ‘life cycle’ emissions approach

As climate change becomes an increasingly pressing political issue, how we measure success in reducing emissions becomes ever more important. Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is more comprehensive than many other forms of assessment and has the support of steelmakers. How the steel industry can best respond to the challanges of climate change and how regulation will change the global industry will be central themes of the third annual SBB Green Steel Strategies conference. For more details click here.

SBB 1 December With more stringent US fuel efficiency and emissions rules on the table and ongoing European negotiations bringing the issue of climate change to the forefront, WorldAutoSteel is pushing for governments around the world to shift the basis of greenhouse gas reduction initiatives from simply measuring tailpipe emissions to a life cycle assessment (LCA) approach.

The US is considering new fuel economy and emissions requirements for 2017-2025, and the European Union is preparing a mid-term review of EU emission standards for new cars, expected by the end of 2012. Vehicle efficiency standards are also being evaluated in a number of Asia Pacific countries, points out WorldAutoSteel – the automotive arm of the World Steel Association.

Rather than focusing purely on emissions, WorldAutoSteel says an LCA approach “considers emissions from all aspects of a vehicle’s life, including material production, manufacturing, driving and end-of-life-recycling,” giving a better picture of a vehicle’s actual carbon footprint.

WorldAutoSteel director Cees ten Broek says measuring only tailpipe emissions “encourages the use of greenhouse gas-intensive manufacturing phase technologies, such as low-density materials, in an effort to reduce fuel consumption.” These materials, such as aluminum, compete directly with highly recyclable, advanced high-strength, low-weight steels being developed by WorldAutoSteel member companies.

“A regulatory approach that includes life cycle principles also has the advantage of providing carmakers greater flexibility in applying the lowest cost technology in complying with the rules as opposed to the current tailpipe approach,” ten Broek says in a statement sent to Steel Business Briefing.