Green Business

ArcelorMittal plots $100m-a-year green steel innovation investment fund

Written by pgex7

ArcelorMittal is aiming to invest up to $100m per year in “transformative technologies” and innovations offering the potential to speed up decarbonisation of the steel sector as part of a new green steel innovation fund launched last week.

The steelmaking giant said the XCarb Innovation Fund would also provide start-ups with “advice and expertise in innovation” as well as access to the steelmaker’s research and development, technology commercialisation and business mentorship teams.

Seven “technology domains” eligible for the funding include new methods of steelmaking, waste to gas or biocarbon, gases reforming/transformation processes, hydrogen production as well as carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS). Other innovation areas eligible for funding include long-term, large-scale energy storage and clean energy.

Finalists are to be invited to pitch their ideas to a panel of industry experts at an ‘Accelerator Day’ – due to be held in mid-to-late July – for the chance to secure investment support from the fund to scale up their projects and make them commercially viable, the firm said.

“The need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is one of the greatest investment requirements of our time,” said Aditya Mittal, CEO of ArcelorMittal. “Steel can make a huge contribution to the decarbonisation of the global economy and at ArcelorMittal. We are committed to leading our industry’s efforts, and to accelerate the speed of our progress. Advancing the development of the technologies and processes which are pivotal to our industry’s transition. is a very important element of this.”

It follows the steelmaker’s announcement last year that it plans to invest $10bn over the next decade to help support its transition away from fossil fuels, on which the steel sector remains largely reliant worldwide, as it pushes forward with its target to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. Globally, the steel sector is estimated to be responsible for around eight per cent of greenhouse gas emissions.

ArcelorMittal has also been steadily upping its green steel investments. Both Heliogen – a renewable energy company which harnesses solar energy by using a field of mirrors to act as a “multi-acre magnifying glass” to concentrate and capture sunlight – and green hydrogen producer H2Pro, have received investments form the steelmaker in recent years. Energy storage company Form Energy and LanzaTech, which focuses on capturing carbon-rich waste gases from the steelmaking process, has also received support from ArcelorMittal.

“We already have an industry-leading suite of decarbonisation technologies under development but we are always looking for further opportunities to accelerate our progress,” said Irina Gorbonova, head of the XCarb Innovation Fund at ArcelorMittal. “This competition provides us with an exciting platform to get involved with and support the best and brightest ideas which can decarbonise our industry.”

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