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  ArcelorMittal commissions waste wood-to-biocoal plant in Belgium
[Jan 5, 2024]

ArcelorMittal has commissioned a plant that processes waste wood into bio-coal, suitable for its blast furnace process at its steel plant in Ghent, Belgium.

This is a first for the European steel industry, according to the organisation. It estimates a reduction of annual carbon emissions by 112,500 tonnes, with the Torero plant converting 88,000 tonnes of waste wood into 37,500 tonnes of bio-coal each year.

The use of bio-coal in the blast furnace process will produce biogas which will be transformed into ethanol by the Steelanol facility. This can then be used as a building block to produce a variety of chemical products including transport fuels, paints, plastics, clothing and even cosmetic perfume.

The ethanol will be jointly marketed by ArcelorMittal and LanzaTech under the Carbalyst® brand name.
Manfred Van Vlierberghe, CEO of ArcelorMittal Belgium, commented: ¡°ArcelorMittal Belgium has the ambition to decarbonise its steel production. In this context, we are fully engaged in implementing an action plan to reduce CO2 emissions by 35% by 2030 compared to 2018 and to become climate neutral by 2050.

"We want to reduce not only our carbon footprint, but also our waste footprint ¨C our steel company has a roadmap to zero carbon emissions and zero waste. We will do this step by step, in a responsible way, and the commissioning of the Torero plant is one such step ¨C partially replacing fossil coal with bio-coal.

"This fits perfectly with our XCarb® programme that brings together all of ArcelorMittal¡¯s products and steelmaking activities with reduced, low and zero carbon emissions, as well as broader initiatives and innovation projects, into a single effort aimed at achieving demonstrable progress toward net zero carbon steel.¡±