6. Responsible energy user that helps create a lower carbon future

Steel is an energy – and carbon-intensive industry. As the world’s largest steel producer, we have one of the world’s largest corporate carbon footprints. We want our stakeholders to trust us that we are cutting our energy consumption and carbon emissions wherever we can. However, our focus is not just on our own processes: through innovation and new product development we are also helping our customers find ways to reduce their energy consumption and carbon emissions.

Why is this important to us?

Energy efficiency is not only an effective first response to reducing carbon emissions: it also reduces costs, not only for us but those who make use of our steel. Continued research into energy efficiency and other low carbon technologies is also vital to enable the changes society is looking for.

The commercial imperative

What kind of challenges do we face?

Energy costs flow straight to our bottom line – our energy bill in North America rose by around $350 million in the first half of 2014, after the worst winter in 50 years forced up the price of gas – and so energy efficiency is a key part of our response. More than most other industries, the steel industry would be significantly affected by an increase in the price of carbon or more stringent emissions trading schemes, but national or regional schemes will only move the problem elsewhere, so we are convinced that a global solution is needed rather than different regional schemes. 

What do we need to do?

The rising cost of energy is a business risk which we can and do mitigate, for example, by using and recovering energy more efficiently in our steel and mining operations or by exporting our waste heat for the benefit of others. We also need to continue to research new technology that could make the steelmaking process less energy and carbon-intensive, while doing everything we can to ensure our steel is fully recycled, so that we can maximize the potential to reduce carbon emissions over its full lifecycle. We also continue our work on more sustainable product design and need to do more to measure the value of our steel over its entire lifecycle.

What is the potential to create value?

We’re already saving a lot through our energy efficiency measures at our steel plants, making our business and our customers more resilient to future increases in energy prices. If our research develops further technologies to reduce energy consumption, this resilience will be enhanced. In our products, meanwhile, our specialised lightweight steel is already creating value in the automotive industry by helping vehicles to reduce fuel consumption; and our electrical steels are enabling huge improvements in energy efficiency in the power generation sector and in electric cars.

Our stakeholders’ expectations

As regulation increases and its scope widens, companies are expected to be more transparent about how much energy they use, how much carbon they emit, and how their products and supply chain perform in both of these areas. Shareholders, consumers and increasingly our customers are expecting this too and as a result, the European Union is developing more ambitious carbon targets for 2030. The EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS) will be one way of achieving these targets, and policymakers expect us to share our understanding with them about how these schemes will work in reality. The EU ETS is the first such scheme around the world: Kazakhstan, Quebec and Mexico are following suit. In South Africa, a bill to tax carbon dioxide emissions is under discussion, and in the US, the Environmental Protection Agency has taken the first steps towards implementing a comprehensive greenhouse gas policy. The need to address these expectations is one reason why ISO50001 – the energy management standard designed to help organisations improve their energy performance – is possibly the most rapidly implemented ISO standard there’s ever been.

The outcome we need

We are trusted to minimise energy use and carbon emissions by every means that is technically and commercially possible. We develop innovative products that help other industries to reduce carbon emissions and drive carbon and energy improvements in our steel production. And our stakeholders see us as contributing positively to a lower-carbon future.

Achieving our new outcome

Achieving this outcome will involve building on our existing approach to energy and carbon research, ensuring a joined up approach to energy and carbon across our operations, taking into account the expectations of our customers, investors, regulators and employees, as well as long-term global thinking on climate change. We are asking the management of all our operations to review and plan their approach in line with our sustainable development framework.

What's new?

News 21.09.2016 Steel goes circular: The Circular Building
News 19.03.2015 ArcelorMittal steel in Warsaw underground
Our Stories01.05.2016 Steel goes circular: re-using sheet piles
Our Stories01.04.2016 Collaboration on the Great Lakes
Our Stories01.04.2016 Getting on the front foot in Ostrava: dealing with dust
Our Stories01.04.2016 Fertile thinking: farmers benefiting from steel slag
Our Stories01.04.2016 Clearing the air: new products for indoor environments
Our Stories01.04.2016 New ideas, new technology: interns in Argentina
Our Stories01.01.2015 Engineering low-carbon solutions for buildings
Our Stories01.01.2015 Sustain Our Great Lakes
Our Stories01.01.2015 Measuring impact in South Africa
Our Stories01.01.2015 Liberia: Mobilising the response to Ebola
Our Stories01.01.2015 Creating shared value at the base of the pyramid
Our Stories01.01.2014 Rails of steel
Our Stories01.01.2014 Strong, sustainable, inspirational steel
Our Stories01.01.2014 The science behind the steel
Our Stories26.06.2012 Steel on the move
Our Stories01.04.2012 Clearing the air
Our Stories31.03.2012 The house of the future
Our Stories01.01.2012 Making zero the hero
Our Stories01.01.2011 Saldanha's scorpions
Our Stories01.01.2011 Transforming tomorrow in emerging markets
Our Stories01.01.2010 Engaging with local communities
Insight30.05.2015 Steel packaging and the circular economy
SD Update19.01.2017 Gender diversity award for ArcelorMittal Ostrava
SD Update31.10.2016 Moroccan steelmaker heads for 90% wind-powered steel
SD Update10.10.2016 Largest exporter in Bosnia & Herzegovina
SD Update25.09.2016 Judiciary honour for social outreach work in Brazil
SD Update27.06.2016 ArcelorMittal assesses contribution to South Africa
SD Update16.05.2016 Nafta: review of 2015
SD Update13.05.2016 How does ArcelorMittal create value for society?
SD Update03.12.2015 Presenting lightweight solutions at Megatrends India
SD Update12.11.2015 The building you can build again and again
SD Update30.07.2015 Building for the future: the b home
SD Update17.04.2015 Kazakhstan and Ukraine: Ethics days
SD Update26.02.2015 Kazakhstan: best workers honoured
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: researching technology
SD Update01.01.2015 US: Maximising water re-use
SD Update01.01.2015 Engaging with our suppliers: Buying safe products
SD Update01.01.2015 Kazakhstan: Treating mine water
SD Update01.01.2015 US: Girls in STEM
SD Update01.01.2015 South Africa: Renewable energy
SD Update01.01.2015 US: Encouraging interest in STEM
SD Update01.01.2015 The social value of steel
SD Update01.01.2015 Brazil and South Africa: Nuclear energy
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: The integrity campaign
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: Employment and turnover
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: Collective bargaining agreements
SD Update01.01.2015 South Africa: Building the skills the economy needs
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: adapting to the downturn
SD Update01.01.2015 US: Success in both steel and mining
SD Update01.01.2015 Europe: European Works Council
SD Update01.01.2015 Morocco: Reducing accidents to zero
SD Update01.01.2015 Training: Performance and progress
SD Update01.01.2015 Mining: Managing security
SD Update01.01.2015 R&D: Innovations in our energy processes
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: Performance and progress
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: Progress and performance
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: Health and safety day
SD Update01.01.2015 Americas: Continued progress
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: Performance and progress - Resources
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: Maximising value from residues
SD Update01.01.2015 Europe: The Energize programme
SD Update01.01.2015 Performance and progress
SD Update01.01.2015 Jean-Sebastien Thomas: a personal contribution
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: R&D
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: Performance and progress - Resources
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: Women in Leadership programme
SD Update01.01.2015 Morocco: Developing a local scrap economy
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: Valuing differences
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: Performance and progress
SD Update01.01.2015 Progress and performance: Assessing our suppliers
SD Update01.01.2015 South Africa: Zero effluent discharge (ZED)
SD Update01.01.2015 US: Encouraging women into steelmaking
SD Update01.01.2015 Poland: A broad-based programme
SD Update01.01.2015 Romania: Meeting targets
SD Update01.01.2015 Customers: Managing sustainability enquiries
SD Update01.01.2015 Performance and progress
SD Update01.01.2015 Conflict minerals: tracing our supply chain
SD Update01.01.2015 Liberia: The resettlement and livelihoods programme
SD Update01.01.2015 Measuring our impact
SD Update01.01.2015 Local procurement: BBBEE in South Africa
SD Update01.01.2015 Morocco and Czech Republic: Employee volunteering
SD Update01.01.2015 South Africa: Environmental disclosure
SD Update01.01.2015 Liberia: Responding to Ebola
SD Update01.01.2015 Bosnia & Herzegovina: Responding to the floods
SD Update01.01.2015 Mining: Managing risks from our tailings dams
SD Update01.01.2015 Algeria: Supporting women
SD Update01.01.2015 Liberia: Protecting natural habitats
SD Update01.01.2015 Mexico: A mixed year
SD Update01.01.2015 Railways and bridges
SD Update01.01.2015 Liberia: Managing expectations
SD Update01.01.2015 Flood defences
SD Update01.01.2015 France: living up to our promises
SD Update01.01.2015 Baffinland, Canada: committed for the long term
SD Update01.01.2015 Europe: EU2030
SD Update01.01.2015 Performance and progress
SD Update01.01.2015 Replacing hazardous compounds
SD Update01.01.2015 Reducing zinc
SD Update01.01.2015 Energy efficiency: insulation
SD Update01.01.2015 R&D: New ways to deal with CO2e
SD Update01.01.2015 Liberia: Responding to Ebola
SD Update01.01.2015 R&D: Low-impact steelmaking
SD Update01.01.2015 Kazakhstan: Health checks
SD Update01.01.2015 Performance and progress
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: Tackling stress
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: Raising health awareness
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: R&D
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: Performance and progress
SD Update01.01.2015 Czech Republic: Modernisation programme at Ostrava
SD Update01.01.2015 Czech Republic: Aiming to be a non-smoking company
SD Update01.01.2015 Canada: Challenges for Dofasco
SD Update01.01.2015 Global: supporting research students
SD Update01.01.2015 Bosnia and Herzegovina: Mixed blessings
SD Update01.01.2015 Germany: apprenticeships volunteering
SD Update01.01.2015 Future leaders scheme
SD Update01.01.2015 France: Investing in university-level talent
SD Update25.06.2013 Presenting new ultra lightweight car door solution