Ontario steel mill is spending $1.75 billion to eliminate coal from its production process

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The project will reduce carbon emissions from the plant – currently one of Ontario’s largest greenhouse gas producers – by approximately three million tonnes per year

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Dofasco’s Hamilton plant will be among the first steel mills to switch to production methods that do not rely on coal.

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Ontario Premier Doug Ford will join Economic Development Minister Vic Fedeli in Hamilton on Tuesday to announce the $1.75 billion project, made possible by $500 million in loans and grants from the province, and $400 million in federal investments.

The project will be one of the first plants owned by ArcelorMittal — the Luxembourg-based steel producer that acquired Dofasco in 2006 — to replace its coke ovens and blast furnaces with direct-reduced iron-fired electric arc furnaces. loans to hydrogen, a technology that emits far less carbon than traditional steelmaking.

Current steelmaking methods involve the use of coke – created by superheating coal in an airtight furnace – both as a blast furnace fuel and as a reducing agent to prepare iron ore for smelting.

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The project will reduce carbon emissions from the plant — currently one of Ontario’s largest greenhouse gas producers — by about three million tonnes per year.

Switching to this “green steel” technology, Development Minister Fideli said in a press release, will make Hamilton steel an attractive product for automakers and the manufacturing industry as a whole looking to reduce their carbon footprint.

ArcelorMittal’s North American CEO John Brett said the project is part of the company’s plans to cut its carbon emissions by 25% by 2030.

“As part of this, we understand that in the years to come, the assets used to make steel will undergo a transformation on a scale not seen for many decades,” he said in the press release.

Dominion Foundries and Steel opened its first steel mill in Hamilton in 1912, owning many subsidiaries, including fabrication and iron mines, until divested in the 1990s.

Dofasco employs over 4,600 workers and is Hamilton’s largest private sector employer.

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