The Yomiuri Shimbun reported that Nippon plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Nippon Steel President Mr Eiji Hashimoto told The Yomiuri Shimbun “The target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to net zero in 2050 is one of the most important management issues. The company would strive to achieve this goal set by Prime Minister Mr Yoshihide Suga’s Cabinet. Countries have begun to compete over the development of environmental technologies and we need financial support from the state government to achieve the target. Japanese companies are ahead of other countries in environmental technology. I am confident that if we receive the same level of government support as in other countries, we will be able to compete internationally.”
For the time being, Nippon Steel aims to achieve the target by melting down steel scrap and using electric furnaces, which emit relatively little CO2.
The steel industry emits the largest amount of carbon dioxide in the manufacturing industry because when iron is extracted from iron oxide in iron ore, oxygen reacts with carbon, producing carbon dioxide. Steelmakers around the world are trying to find ways to produce steel using hydrogen instead of carbon to prevent CO2 emissions. At present, however, it remains at the experimental level in small facilities.