SSAB announces strategic partnership

This long-term deal will reportedly see the supply of steel made with virtually zero fossil carbon emissions.

SSAB has entered a partnership with UK-based manufacturer Firth Steels which includes the immediate delivery of SSAB Zero, commercial steel made of recycled steel and produced with fossil-free electricity and biogas.

The steel, SSAB said, will be used as a key component of Firth Steels’ Protex Voyage which is a low embodied carbon building envelope solution.

“We are absolutely thrilled to have been selected by SSAB to embark on this great journey in reducing carbon emissions in all aspects of our steel process,” said Firth Steels Managing Director, James Firth.

Firth Steels Managing Director, James Firth. Image: SSAB.

“As a UK-based roll-former of steel profiles, Scope 3 emissions represent the largest portion of our carbon footprint. By forming strategic partnerships with the world’s leading mills, we can significantly reduce these emissions and forge a sustainable future for our planet from the outset, not offset.”

Dave Williams, SSAB Swedish Steel Managing Director, said that by cutting carbon emissions, SSAB can help its customers reduce their indirect missions from the materials they use.

Traditional steel production represents a significant source of global CO2 emissions, with both virgin and recycled steel production contributing to emissions. By changing the way steel is produced, SSAB wants to cut emissions and create a fossil-free value chain with customers and partners regardless of whether the raw material is scrap or iron ore.

To this end, SSAB has created two unique steels with virtually zero fossil carbon emissions: SSAB Zero and SSAB Fossil-free steel. SSAB Fossil-free steel is made from iron ore with the unique HYBRIT technology, developed by SSAB with mining company LKAB and energy company Vattenfall.

Instead of using coal to remove the oxygen from the iron ore to make iron, the HYBRIT technology uses hydrogen produced with fossil-free electricity, thus emitting water instead of CO2. SSAB Fossil-free steel is currently available for pilot deliveries to selected partners, with volumes expected to increase in the coming years.

SSAB Swedish Steel Managing Director, Dave Williams. Image: SSAB.

In addition to cutting indirect Scope 3 emissions, Firth Steels has several sustainable initiatives, under their ‘For Good’ campaign to reduce emissions from its own operations including energy used (Scope 1 and 2). The company has a battery storage facility on site and solar arrays which provide grid-free storage and production off grid if need be. It is certified by Planet Mark, an independent sustainability certification that measures carbon and social data.

In related news, SSAB’s near- and long-term carbon emissions reduction targets have been approved by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi). Approval is reported to mean that the targets are scientifically based an in line with SBTi’s raised requirements for companies to deliver on the goal of limiting global warming to 1.5°C.

SSAB is in the process of replacing its Nordic blast furnace-based production system with state-of-the-art mini-mill technology and electric arc furnaces that run on fossil-free electricity. Once completed, the transformation will eliminate about 10 percent of Sweden’s and 7 percent of Finland’s total CO2 emissions.

In other news, timber haulier Bolognesi & Goren has invested in SSAB Strenx high performance steel.

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