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Responding to Climate Change 2011

Home | Biodiversity & Land Use | LKAB Group Action as true as steel

Action as true as steel

LKAB Group

The unique magnetite ore fields of Swedish Lapland reduce CO2 emissions worldwide
The unique magnetite ore fields of Swedish Lapland reduce CO2 emissions worldwide
The LKAB Group covers much of the world, with representation in Europe, Asia, the US, and South America. It has 3,700 employees and consists of 30 companies in 15 countries.

Using the ore fields of Swedish Lapland, its main product is iron ore pellets for production of crude iron in blast furnaces and direct reduction processes. LKAB produces 90% of the iron ore mined in Europe, and its products are sold particularly to customers in Europe, North Africa and the Middle East.

Addressing global climate impact is particularly pertinent to the iron and steel industry. The magnetite-based iron ore pellets produced by LKAB represent the most climate smart route from mine to crude iron on today’s market. LKAB’s six pelletising plants all belong to the world top 10% as regards low CO2 emissions. The magnetite itself contributes 60% of the heat needed in the pelletising process. On top of that, world class technological solutions explain why emissions from the LKAB plants are between three and seven times lower than those of any alternative producer or processes.

Together with its European customers, LKAB is a founder and member of the project ULCOS (Ultra-Low CO2 Steelmaking) with the aim to halve CO2 emissions from steelmaking by the year 2050. The results look very promising. Research conducted at the LKAB experimental blast furnace in Luleå, Sweden, using LKAB green pellets and a method called top gas recycling has shown a potential to reduce CO2 emissions from the blast furnace process by as much as 60-70%.

These results have opened the way to even greater efficiency in iron making. Within the framework for the Ironman project, together with companies Höganäs and Statoil, LKAB sees long-term possibilities in Europe for the production of crude iron using direct reduction (DR), a natural gas based alternative to the blast furnace. The Ironman project aims to create the world’s most CO2 efficient plant, in Norway, for the production of crude iron.

The company is also working with partners on a number of CO2 sequestration projects, investigating the possibilities for binding CO2 by using waste rock as well as compensating CO2 emissions by faster-growing forest. LKAB has part ownership of the wind power company, VindIn AB, whose first wind park, was built this year in the south of Sweden. Studies are also underway to investigate the possibility of wind power in other areas.

One of last year’s pleasant surprises was that LKAB won First Prize for its first-ever sustainability report. The FAR SRS award for Sweden’s best sustainability report was presented at Finforum last December. This is a testimonial to the dedicated effort invested by LKAB in various sustainability-related contexts. Active cooperation with the surrounding communities is a prerequisite for the success of its business.

LKAB Group logo

LKAB Group

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