ArcelorMittal unveiled at the beginning of November its latest projects to decarbonise its two steel sites in France in Dunkirk North and Fos-sur-Mer Bouches-du-Rhone, which each have two blast furnaces. Rather than a brutal conversion, ArcelorMitta chose to accumulate the technological bricks to move incrementally towards the production of zero carbon steel in 2050. In addition to recycling, which is gaining ground, two avenues are being explored to reduce the carbon footprint of steel. The first is the capture of CO2, which will be stored or recovered. The second is the direct reduction of the ore by a gas, natural and shale, as in the United States, or, better, green hydrogen produced by electrolysis of water thanks to to renewable electricity.
In Dunkirk, the steelmaker is considering three levers. The doubling of the tonnages of recycled steel should reduce its emissions by 8%. The green blast furnace, which will not be completely so, further lowers them by 17%. Based on the Igar pilot, it plans to replace coal with iron and steel gases, including a part of gray hydrogen, captured, purified and then reinjected into the blast furnace. The 3D project, DMX Demonstration in Dunkirk, which reduces emissions by 8%, captures carbon to store it in oil wells depleted in the North Sea and in the seabed of the Norwegian continental shelf (Northern Lights project), thanks to collaboration with Ifpen, Axens, Total and seven other partners. The pilot should start in 2021, before an industrial version planned for 2025. At this stage, the northern site will have reduced its carbon footprint by 33% by 2030.
In Fos-sur-Mer, Arcelor intends to multiply by ten the recycling of scrap metal by 2030, to reduce its emissions by 20%, which will cost it a pocket oven by 2024, then a pre-melting oven. This is the CarbHFlex project, unveiled on November 3 by ArcelorMittal Mediterranee, which could be deployed between 2021 and 2026. It is about"biologically converting carbon, into ethanol for fuels like in Ghent, Belgium, but also into isopropyl alcohol, acetone, a precursor of plexiglass, and other precursors of plastics
ArcelorMittal hopes to obtain European financing before the end of 2021.