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Coal-free steelmaking

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World Coal,

Three Swedish companies have launched an initiative to eliminate carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from the Swedish steel industry. SSAB, a steelmaker, LKAB an iron ore miner, and Vattenfall, a utility, will work together to develop a steel production process that emits water rather than CO2.

“The environment and sustainability have been a part of SSAB’s long-term strategy for many year,” said Martin Lindqvist, President and CEO of SSAB. “Under this initiative, we will take responsibility to solve, long term, the problem of CO2 in the steel industry.”

Current steelmaking technology, which uses coke plants and blast furnaces, means SSAB is currently Sweden’s largest emitter of CO2 emissions.

“Sweden has the chance to take the lead in this matter,” continued Lindquist. “No other country in Europe has the same opportunity thanks to the competence of our three companies and country’s unique natural resources. Our three companies have a clear future vision: together we can create a more sustainable future, where one of the goals is steel without coal.”

Sweden generates over half of its electricity from carbon-free sources, including renewables and nuclear, while its iron ore deposits are of the highest quality in Europe. This combination of factors makes the country “uniquely placed” to undertake this project, according to a press release.

“It is very pleasing to take part in an initiative to secure the future of one of Sweden’s important branches of industry by using CO2-free electricity to replace fossil fuel in steel production,” said Magnus Hall, President and CEO at Vattenfall. “This is the start of a highly interesting, climate-friendly development project that benefits our partners, Vattenfall and not least the climate.”

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