Driving the responsible production and sourcing of steel, ResponsibleSteel™ is the steel industry’s first global multi-stakeholder standard and certification initiative.

ArcelorMittal has played a pivotal role in establishing this standard since 2015.  

ResponsibleSteel™ is a not-for-profit organisation developing sustainability performance standards and an independent third-party certification programme for the steel value chain. At its heart, it is a multi-stakeholder collaboration between business and civil society. This ground-breaking initiative now involves over 40 members and associates, made up of companies and civil society organisations from around the world.

"Responsible production techniques and high ethical and business standards are becoming increasingly important to our customers, and ultimately to their customers and consumers. We want to get to a point where steel users and purchasers have total confidence in their choices.” Alan Knight, former Head of Sustainable Development

Our approach

We know the importance of creating a standard to ensure that steel industry customers – and thereby consumers – can be confident that the steel they use has been sourced and produced responsibly at every stage.

By creating a multi-stakeholder forum to build trust and achieve consensus, ResponsibleSteel™ aims to enhance the responsible sourcing, production, use and recycling of steel through the development of standards, certification and related tools.

In November 2019, ResponsibleSteel™ published a performance standard for steel making sites with 12 environmental, social and governance principles. Members using the standard will be able to gain competitive advantage by using the standards to inform customers of the credibility and rigour that has gone into auditing their social and environmental performance.

Having run pilot audits across key sites in 2018 and 2019, whilst the standard was in development, in July 2021 ArcelorMittal announced the first sites to be certified – ArcelorMittal Belgium (Geel, Genk, Gent and Liège), Luxembourg (Belval, Differdange and Rodange) and Germany (Bremen and Eisenhüttenstadt.

ResponsibleSteel are now in the process of creating a product standard, involving additional requirements in relation to raw materials and greenhouse gas emissions. While meeting the requirements published in November 2019 allows steel sites to make claims about the way their site is operated, meeting the additional requirements will serve to identify and reward companies that are committed to creating a responsible steel value chain and that are minimising their CO2 emissions. ResponsibleSteel is aiming to have a ratified product standard by the fourth quarter of 2021. 

A closer look at ResponsibleSteel™ Principles

  • Principle 1. Corporate Leadership
  • Principle 2. Social, Environmental and Governance Management Systems
  • Principle 3. Responsible Sourcing 
  • Principle 4. Decommissioning and Closure
  • Principle 5. Occupational and Community Health and Safety
  • Principle 6. Labour Rights
  • Principle 7. Human Rights
  • Principle 8. Local Communities
  • Principle 9. Stakeholder Engagement and Communication
  • Principle 10. Climate Change and Greenhouse Gas Emissions
  • Principle 11. Noise, Emissions, Effluents, and Waste
  • Principle 12. Water Stewardship
  • Principle 13. Biodiversity