Investment in technology– a major step in tackling climate change across aluminium industry

Around the world, the aluminium industry is investing in projects, new technologies and building critical partnerships that are playing a key role in meeting environmental targets for 2050.

These include contracts for renewable energy, particularly wind, solar and hydropower; the creation of virtual batteries within smelters; the smart use of fuel sources, such as hydrogen and recycled steam; the use of lighter vehicles for transporting goods; and ideas for taking the recycling agenda further.

These novel solutions support the International Aluminium Institute (IAI)’s three pathways to emissions reduction for the aluminium industry:

  • Electricity decarbonisation – with more than 60% of the aluminium sectors CO2e emissions from the production of electricity consumed during smelting, decarbonised power generation and carbon capture and storage (CCUS) will significantly support emission-reduction goals.
  • Direct emissions reduction – electrification, fuel switching and CCUS offer a credible approach to reduce emissions from fuel combustion, while new technologies, such as inert anodes, can lower process emissions.
  • Recycling and resource efficiency – increased collection rates and other resource efficiency actions would reduce the need for primary aluminium by 20%.

Pernelle Nunez, IAI’s Director of Sustainability and Deputy Secretary General notes:

“There is no single solution and it is reassuring to see that technology is advancing across the three pathways, and that governments, aluminium producers and the wider industry are forging powerful relationships that will truly make a difference. I’m confident that the fantastic work already under way will inspire our industry to think about actions they can take now and in the future to combat climate change.”

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