Steel Mills

SSAB Americas Targets Fossil-free Production by 2026

Written by Sandy Williams

SSAB Americas plans to be the first supplier of fossil-free steel in North America. The company has targeted 2026 for its operations in Montpelier, Iowa, to be powered completely by renewable energy.

The Montpelier facility is powered primarily by wind farms operated by MidAmerican Energy. The steel produced at the Iowa mill is used to build energy infrastructure such as wind towers and bridges, as well as heavy construction equipment. MidAmerican Energy expects to deliver 100 percent renewable energy to its customers by 2022.

SSAB mills in the United State operate scrap-based electric arc furnace technology, which uses almost entirely recycled materials. To supplement its scrap use, the Iowa and Alabama plants will use fossil-free sponge iron produced in Sweden as part of the HYBRIT project, leading to the eventual production of fossil-free steel.

The Hybrit project is a joint endeavor lead by SSAB in collaboration with Swedish mining company LKAB and Swedish energy company Vattenfall. The HYBRIT project is developing a process to use hydrogen gas to replace coke in the reduction of iron ore resulting in the emission of water rather than carbon dioxide. The fossil-free production process is expected to enhance SSAB’s advanced high-strength steels.

“SSAB continues to innovate our products and manufacturing processes, and accordingly, we will transition toward fossil-free steelmaking and renewable energy,” said Chuck Schmitt, president of SSAB Americas, a division of global steelmaker SSAB. “Our customers, end users and OEMs are excited to collaborate with us to enable them to be the first in their respective sectors to use SSAB fossil-free steel in their products. Ultimately, our goal is to create a completely fossil-free value chain, from the raw materials and through to the end products.”


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