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India announces big ‘green steel’ ambitions

India is aiming to increase the share of scrap in steelmaking to 50% by 2047 with the government betting on ‘green steel’ to realise a less polluting metals industry.

‘In the next 25 years, the percentage of scrap will be 50% along with the balance 50% as iron ore,’ announced steel minister Jyotiraditya Scindia at the 11th International Material Recycling Conference in Kolkata.

Scindia estimates some 25 million tonnes of scrap are produced in India every year with around five million tonnes being imported. Meanwhile, scrap is used in around 30-35% to the nation’s total steel production.

Scrap by-products have been considered effective and useful materials in cement manufacture, road construction and agriculture in other countries.

‘Our steel sector is known as a hard to abate sector – with an emissions intensity of 2.55 tonne of CO2 per tonne of crude steel produced,’ the minister says. He believes setting up a network of advanced recycling centres could help bring India’s industry up to speed.

‘India has the potential to become a global leader in recycling, given its vast population and the increasing awareness of the importance of sustainability,’ agrees Sanjay Mehta, president of the Material Recycling Association of India.

‘Meanwhile, the recycling industry in India has the potential to create jobs, reduce the impact of waste on the environment and contribute to the country’s economic growth.’

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