Ovako continues to lead the way in sustainable steel production, including an innovative approach to heating steel with fossil-free hydrogen. To accelerate its environmental work, the company now takes the next step by adopting carbon-neutral steel production from January 1, 2022.
“We want to be at the forefront of the transition towards a sustainable society with no carbon emissions. We are therefore initiating 100% carbon-neutral steel production from 2022. Ovako’s climate initiatives have, so far, contributed to a reduction of our carbon footprint by 55 % since 2015. Through our hydrogen heating initiative, we will drive that development further and support our customers in their journey to make their products more climate smart”, says Marcus Hedblom, President and CEO of Ovako.
Ovako has reduced carbon emissions significantly through efficient processes, the use of fossil-free electricity and dedicated investments such as conversions to fossil-free fuels for heat treatment. By building on the success of its recent pilot project to heat steel with fossil-free hydrogen, Ovako is now preparing the first full-scale production installation at its Hofors mill in Sweden. The initiative has the support of several industrial partners as well as the Swedish Energy Agency. Full implementation of hydrogen-fueled heating will further reduce process emissions by a total of 80% from the 2015 baseline – that is, an additional 50% from today’s already low levels.
Ovako’s goal is to achieve zero-carbon emission steel. Beginning in January 2022 and until the goal is met, the company will counterbalance the remaining carbon emissions in production through carbon offsets. The use of offsets will gradually decrease as the company continues to invest in new technology and improve its processes. The purpose of the offsets is to reduce global carbon emissions, thereby contributing to the transition toward a sustainable society.
To support its climate initiatives and new technology investments, Ovako will add a climate surcharge on its steel from January 2022.