"ArcelorMittal has a passion for energy efficiency. We are therefore pleased to announce our plans to establish a heat network for the concrete implementation of our sustainability strategy towards an increasingly energy-efficient company, and even towards climate neutrality in 2050".
23 % less emissions than in 1990
Manfred Van Vlierberghe, CEO of steel producer ArcelorMittal Belgium, spoke during a digital information session on the plans for the development of a heat network in or around North Sea Port. A heat network is a network of pipes connected to a source of residual heat. The Province of East Flanders was also present at this information moment because it will be looking for a partner through the Provincial Development Agency East Flanders (POM) together with ArcelorMittal to further develop this project. ArcelorMittal is already making considerable efforts to reduce their emissions: "Today, ArcelorMittal already belongs to the world's top in terms of energy efficiency and CO2 emissions. The company is following the Paris Climate Agreement. Per tonne of steel produced today, there are already 23 % fewer emissions than in 1990, with ArcelorMittal's ambition to be carbon neutral by 2050", according to the company's press release.
With the search for a partner for the development of a (residential) heat network near their site in the Ghent seaport, the steel producer is taking an important step towards this climate neutrality. Part of the residual heat would be for the company itself. In a first phase, they want to investigate whether this residual heat can be sent to the Sint-Jan-Baptist Zelzate psychiatric center. "A second phase should look at the possibilities for an extension to Zelzate, even more internal applications within ArcelorMittal and other opportunities" according to Arcelor Mittal. ArcelorMittal expresses the hope of being able to announce the chosen partner by 2021.
Residual heat as an asset for new investors
That this project will take place in or around North Sea Port should come as no surprise. North Sea Port has very ambitious energy and climate targets for much longer. "North Sea Port is taking on a leading role in the energy transition in the port area. We would like to build on this experience to use ArcelorMittal's residual heat. This offers opportunities to check with companies whether residual heat can be used. In the future, North Sea Port can play the offering of residual heat as an asset for new investors", says Daan Schalck, CEO of North Sea Port.