China’s crude steel output will peak at around 1.16 billion tonnes in 2025, when carbon emissions in the sector will also reach a peak, a government consultancy said on Saturday.
The steel sector accounts for 15% of China’s total greenhouse gas emissions, making it a key focus after President Xi Jinping pledged last year to pass the peak of China’s carbon emissions in the next ten years.
“The output figure is just an estimation, but it’s a trend,” Li Xinchuang, chairman of the China Metallurgical Industry Planning and Research Institute told an industry conference in Beijing.
By 2030, carbon emissions in the steel sector is forecast to fall by 30% from its peak, and the industry aims to cut emissions by 420 million tonnes.
“The target is very challenging,” Li said, adding that state-owned mills should take the lead.
China’s top two steelmakers China Baowu Steel Group and HBIS Group had set individual goals to reach carbon emission peaks in 2023 and 2022 respectively.
The industry should change its ‘northern steel shipping to southern market’ situation and largely cut long-processing steel capacity in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei area, according to Li.
He also suggested improving raw material structure and developing low-carbon technology, “hydrogen metallurgy and reducing costs are key points”.
China churned out 1.065 billion tonnes of crude steel in 2020, accounting for 57% of the world’s total output.
(By Min Zhang and Emily Chow; Editing by Christina Fincher)