The European Parliament's Committee has made a key decision to support all steel decarbonization technologies. This will speed up the EU's industrial-scale steel decarbonization projects and help the sector reach its net-zero goals. The decision also simplifies administrative processes and sets sustainability criteria for public procurement of clean tech.
The European Parliament's Committee on Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE) has taken a significant step by recognizing all steel decarbonization technologies as net-zero. This decision is part of the Net Zero Industry Act (NZIA), aimed at accelerating the transition to sustainable steel production in the European Union.
Steel companies have already announced major investments in different EU member states. Ground breaking low-carbon projects are set to launch as early as 2025 and 2026. The committee's decision will speed up the implementation of innovative processes like hydrogen-based steelmaking and Carbon Capture, Utilisation and Storage (CCUS).
The ITRE Committee's provisions propose the principle of technological neutrality, endorsing various technologies like hydrogen-based, electricity-based, and CCUS for achieving EU climate goals. It insists that for CCUS technology to be effective, there needs to be a comprehensive approach considering infrastructure, cross-border transportation, and standardization.
One of the biggest challenges in transitioning to sustainable steel production has been administrative procedures. The new measures will eliminate this bottleneck, making it easier for companies to implement low-carbon technologies.
To compete globally, the EU needs to level the playing field by providing adequate financial incentives for the steel industry. Axel Eggert, the Director General of the European Steel Association (EUROFER), emphasizes that sufficient funding is crucial to keep pace with global competitors in clean tech.
According to Mr. Eggert, the next steps are crucial for setting up the industry for successful decarbonization. Cooperation between the Parliament and the Council is essential for reaching a quick compromise that will boost the EU industry's decarbonization efforts.
The EU is making ground breaking strides in decarbonizing the steel industry. With the Net Zero Industry Act, it has set actionable guidelines and eased administrative burdens to fast-track the industry's transition to net-zero emissions. This not only sets an example for global industries but also positions the EU as a leader in sustainable steel production.