ArcelorMittal, the largest steel producer in the world, received a € 75 million loan from the European Investment Bank with the support of the European Commission.
The loan will be used to build two ground-breaking projects at ArcelorMittal Ghent, Belgium, to significantly reduce carbon emissions by converting waste and by-products into valuable new products, helping to develop low-carbon steel technologies in line with the EU Climate Targets.
The project revolves around Steelanol, a € 165 million industrial scale demonstration plant that will collect blast furnace waste gases and biologically convert them into recycled carbon-ethanol, the first commercial product of the ArcelorMittal Carbalyst® family of recycled carbon chemicals. The resulting ethanol can be blended for use as a liquid fuel, says ArcelorMittal.
Upon completion, the plant is expected to produce up to 80 million liters of recycled carbon ethanol per year.
The technology was developed by LanzaTech, with which ArcelorMittal has entered into a long-term partnership with Primetals and E4tech.
According to ArcelorMittal, the new plant will create up to 500 jobs over the next two years and 20 to 30 new permanent jobs. The project is expected to be completed in 2022.
Another aspect of the project is Torero, a large-scale demonstration plant worth 50 million Euros for converting waste wood into biochar, which partially replaces the coal currently being pumped into the blast furnace.
At an early stage, the Torero plant will be able to process up to 60 thousand tons of wood waste in about 40 thousand tons of biochar per year. This volume will be doubled in the second phase of the project, after the launch of the first Torero reactor. The new plant will create about 70 external jobs and create about 10 new permanent direct jobs for the plant. The plant, which is being developed in partnership with Torr-Coal, Renewi, Joanneum Research Center, Graz University and Chalmers University of Technology, is expected to be operational by the end of 2022.
EIB Vice President Ambroise Fayolle commented: “Even in these difficult times, Europe maintains its ambitious climate targets and the EIB, the EU’s climate bank, continues to strive to remain a key partner. Particularly in the steel industry, this means finding new ways to power the machines and processes that are needed to reduce carbon emissions. Thanks to its close partnership with the European Commission, the EIB is very pleased to support the Steelanol and Torero projects in their efforts to work towards more climate-friendly and competitive processes. ”