Reducing emissions by turning waste gas into chemicals

Posted on: 06/12/2017

A CORESYM consortium report outlines how the steel industry can deliver raw material for the chemical industry.


Breaking research in a ‘CORESYM’ report has revealed potential for symbiosis between chemical and steel industries. CORESYM (CarbOn-monoxide RE-use through industrial SYMbiosis between steel and chemical industries) is led by the Institute for Sustainable Process Technology (ISPT), with project partners including Metabolic, Rijksuniversiteit Groningen, TataSteel Europe, ArcelorMittal, DOW Chemicals, AkzoNobel and Nuon.

The report concludes that the steel industry can drastically reduce CO2 emissions by recycling part of its carbon emissions in the chemical industry. This will in turn help the chemical industry lower its consumption of natural gas and oil. Eventually this development could lead to a reduction of European CO2 emissions of 57 million tons per year, which is 1.3% of the total CO2 emissions in Europe. To realise this perspective the industry will need financial support from the national governments as well as the European Union.

‘’We view this report as a first step towards the re-use of steel gas. We still have many things to figure out, among other things whether or not re-use can prove itself compared to other technologies that can reduce CO2 emissions’’ says Cock Pietersen, Manager Energy Procurement at Tata Steel in Ijmuiden.

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Key recommendations in the report for policy makers and industry include:

  • Incentive structures must be established which work for, not against waste gas recycling
  • Smart carbon pricing can push waste gas recycling into pro table areas, but must also ensure a level playing field
  • Support must continue for renewables, low-impact H2 production, and CCS technologies, which affect the prospects for waste gas recycling indirectly
  • Additional support is required to research or scale up novel new technologies for waste gas recycling
  • The steel and chemicals sector should lead the way in maturing technologies required in CO recycling
  • The energy sector should move quickly to scale up low-impact H2 production and increase total renewable energy capacity
  • The steel, chemicals, and energy sectors will need to work together to enable circular carbon value chains and should already be exploring the possibilities now

For further information and to download the full report please click here.


If you would like to discuss innovations in raw materials please contact Dr Peter Clark (Knowledge Transfer Manager, Raw Materials).


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