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Recycling key to French steel investment

ArcelorMittal has announced a EUR 1.7 billion investment in its decarbonisation programme in France which includes financial support from the government.

The company believes the development of its Fos-sur-Mer and Dunkirk sites ‘will enable a profound transformation of steelmaking in France and a total reduction of close to 40% or 7.8 million tonnes per year in ArcelorMittal’s CO2 emissions in France by 2030’.

ArcelorMittal says that one kilo of steel it produces in France will soon contain up to 25% recycled steel. The partnership with the state is subject to EU approval, which is anticipated by the second quarter of this year.

In Fos-sur-Mer, ArcelorMittal will build an electric arc furnace (EAF) to complement a ladle furnace announced in March 2021. It will also build a 2.5 million tonne direct reduction of iron (DRI) unit using hydrogen instead of coal at Dunkirk. The DRI will be coupled with an electric furnace and completed by an additional EAF.

The facilities will be operational from 2027 and will ultimately replace three of ArcelorMittal’s five blast furnaces in France by 2030.

ArcelorMittal’s objectives include a 35% reduction in CO2 emissions in Europe and a 25% reduction globally by 2030. It is seeking carbon neutrality by 2050. Part of the strategy is capture residual CO2 for storage or usage.

Matthieu Jehl, ceo of ArcelorMittal France, says: ‘This Government support makes possible the extremely high investments we need to make to decarbonise steelmaking on our Dunkirk site, Europe’s largest steel producing site. We will therefore continue transforming our sites in France to deliver our customers with low carbon steel.’

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