Tata Steel has launched plans for a project to capture CO2 from its blast furnaces in IJmuiden, Netherlands, and transport it for storage in empty gas fields under the North Sea.
The project would lead to a 30% reduction of CO2 from the steelmaking site.
It is part of Tata Steel's broader sustainability strategy to be CO2 neutral by 2050. The planned project involves new CO2 capture installations at the site to collect the gas before it is transported for storage. The company is now developing plans to obtain the necessary permits.
Annemarie Manger, Tata Steel’s Director of Sustainability, Health, Safety, Environment & Quality, said: “This proposal is a very important step for our future. We feel a strong responsibility to build a sustainable and connected society for the generations of tomorrow. If we are to realize this ambition it will make us one of the first companies to combine CO2 capture with its storage. We see this as the essential solution with which we contribute significantly to the required emission reduction by 2030. The potential of this is enormous. This technology is already being used in other countries and industries, but not yet in this form and size.”
The project would consist of two phases. Firstly, a new CO2 capture facility would be built at Tata Steel before the gas is then delivered to the pipeline network, called Athos. Athos is a collaboration between EBN, Gasunie, Port of Amsterdam and Tata Steel which would manage the transport, reuse and storage of CO2 in the North Sea Canal area.
The capture of CO2 would offer the possibility in the second phase, in collaboration with other industries, to convert the remaining gases into usable raw materials. This could lead to the reduction of four million tonnes of CO2 a year.
“If successful our aim is to implement this project from 2027,” added Annemarie. ”The capture of CO2 in the first phase is expected to result in a reduction of approximately three million tonnes of CO2 per year. That is the equivalent of us making 1.5 million tonnes of CO2-free steel every year. You could say that about 1.3 million cars per year would drive around made from our climate-neutral steel.”
Tata Steel has developed a program to be able to produce CO2 -neutral steel by 2050. The capture and storage of CO2 could make a significant contribution to this in a relatively short timeframe. The company continues to work towards long-term solutions which will allow the making of steel without CO2 emissions. Tata Steel believes hydrogen will ultimately play a key role in the transition to sustainable steel production. However, this will not happen until it is available in large quantities and produced using renewable energy sources.