CONF: Global miners to cooperate with mills in carbon cut

Posted on 29 March 2021

Iron ore miners Vale and Fortescue Metals Group (FMG) vowed to help Chinese steel mills, their major customers, meet their ambitious goals to reduce carbon emissions and achieve carbon neutrality, according to presenters from both companies addressing delegates at the 2021 International Iron Ore Market Seminar in Qingdao in East China’s Shandong province on March 25.

 

At the one-day event that attracted over 1,000 domestic and foreign participants, the terms “carbon peak” and “carbon neutrality” were among the most frequently referred to by each of the nine speakers, Mysteel Global noted.

Dai Jianqiu, general manager of FMG’s Chichester Metal Trading (Shanghai) Co, said that just a few days ago, the Australian miner had moved forward its deadline for achieving carbon net-zero to 2030 from the original 2040 of last year. 

 

“China’s steel industry has set the goal to peak carbon emission by 2025, earlier than the 2030 national goal. It is ambitious and this is a promise from our side,” Dai said.

“We are aware it is a great challenge, but we have to believe in our speed in promoting related projects,” he told the delegates, many among them being representatives of Chinese steel mills.

FMG has already invested $7 billion in developing solar and wind power as new energy sources for its mining operation and established a special subsidiary for the research on such new technologies, Dai noted. 

To ensure that its 2030 net-zero goal is achieved, FMG said that by June 2021 (the end of the Perth-based company’s financial year) it will complete research on using ammonia gas as the fuel for dry bulk vessels and complete a trial using rechargeable batteries for heavy duty trucks in its mining area. By then, FMG will be using hydrogen-fuelled or ammonia-fuelled light duty trucks too, according to Dai.

For its part, Vale will continue to fulfill its commitment on environmental protection and make efforts to reduce carbon emissions and hit net-zero carbon emission by 2050, Eduardo de Mello Franco, the Brazilian miner’s marketing manager, shared at the Qingdao seminar via video call on Thursday. 

 

In shipping, Vale will enhance the “safe, green and efficient shipping portfolio”, increasing its efficient vessels Valemax and Guaibamax bulk carriers to 41 and 99 respectively by the end of 2021, from 18 and 88 in 2020.

Valemax and Guaibamax ships, with capacity of 400,000 and 325,000 tonnes respectively, produce up to 41% less CO2 equivalent emissions than an 180,000-tonne Capesize ship, according to Vale.

Vale is also promoting technological transformation, which allows “low Fe ores to be converted to 67% Fe content ores,” de Mello Franco said. Moreover, this higher-grade iron ore should account for over 90% of Vale’s total ore products going forward, according to him.

Source : Mysteel Global