The Iron and Steel industry was responsible for an annual output of 2.6 GtCO2/yr in 2005, with 10% from within the European Union. This represents 6% of the total CO2 emission, and 16% of the total industrial emission of CO2. Moreover, the Iron and Steel industry is predicted to continue growing at an average rate of more than 3% per year.
The STEPWISE project aims to decrease CO2 emissions related to the steel making process from about 2 tCO2/tsteel to below 0.5 tCO2/tsteel by means of CO2 removal from the Blast Furnace Gas. Translating this to worldwide scale, the technology being demonstrated in the Stepwise project has the potential to decrease the worldwide CO2 emissions by 2.1 Gt/yr based on current emission levels. The conservative estimate is that by 2050 a potential cost saving of 750 times the project research costs will be realized every year, with a much larger potential. The overall objective is to secure jobs in the highly competitive European steel industry, a sector employing 360,000 skilled people with an annual turnover of 170 billion euro.
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