Thyssenkrupp sets 2050 target for climate neutrality

Industrial engineering group thyssenkrupp has launched an official plan of action in a bid to reduce carbon emissions.

The company has set a target to cut emissions and outsourced energy by around 30 per cent by 2030, a drop of 16 per cent on current levels.

Following this, the company aims to be climate neutral by 2050 in line with the terms of the Paris agreement.

The targets will apply to thyssenkrupp’s production operations, products and the energy it purchases.

Carbon dioxide reduction strategies will be employed at the company’s steel productions, including thyssenkrupp’s own Carbon2Chem project, which uses emissions from steel mill production as raw material for chemicals.

This technology is expected to be ready for industrial-scale application by the initial 2030 target.

The hydrogen route was also cited by the company as part of longer-term plans for its 2050 target, in keeping with the findings of organisations such as the Hydrogen Council. The Hydrogen Council has found that if deployed at scale, hydrogen could account for nearly one-fifth of total energy consumption by 2050, massively reducing carbon dioxide emissions.

In keeping with this, thyssenkrupp’s longer term plans will include replacing coal with hydrogen as the reducing agent for its blast furnaces.

The company has the backing of both the German federal government and North Rhine-Westphalia state government to help fund these technologies.

It will also continue development of energy storage solutions, including electrolysis systems that can convert electricity into hydrogen.

“Our goals are ambitious but achievable,” said Donatus Kaufmann, thyssenkrupp board member for technology, innovation, sustainability, legal and compliance.

“Our strategy for our steel operations alone will cut production-related emissions there by 80 percent by 2050. But if we are to achieve our climate targets we need to make significantly more use of renewable energies.”

From 2016-18, thyssenkrupp scored a rare A grade from the non-governmental organisation Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) for its environmental performance strategy. 

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