Washington, D.C. — A new report from the Center for American Progress highlights the need to curb carbon emissions from two of the largest industrial contributors to climate change—steel and cement manufacturers.
The report discusses what technologies need to be adopted to decarbonize steelmaking, how the United States is falling behind as foreign competitors are racing ahead to decarbonize steel production, and what public funding opportunities are available to the U.S. steel industry to begin to decarbonize steelmaking.
For cement, the multiple stages of production will need to integrate multiple shifts, from changes in inputs to shifts toward cleaner fuels to electrification and incorporation of carbon capture. The pathways will not be uniform and will certainly include multiple processes, from green-hydrogen iron and steelmaking to carbon capture on cement kilns and blast furnaces.
This effort to decarbonize heavy industry also must be worker friendly, and not come at the cost of quality union jobs that provide family-supporting wages and benefits, the report says.
“The goal of decarbonizing global industrial production to reach net-zero emissions by 2050 is within our reach,” said Mike Williams, senior fellow at CAP and co-author of the report. “These efforts should support good jobs at steel and cement facilities and not result in losing domestic production to competing companies that do not have a unionized workforce.”
Recommendations from the report on how to decarbonize these industries include:
- People-focused stakeholder engagement
- Massive direct investments and incentives
- Ambitious administrative action
- Clear and connected trade policy
“Decarbonizing these industries will only succeed if there is a comprehensive approach involving both the private and public sectors – one that attempts to accelerate research, development, and deployment of transformational technologies,” said Auburn Bell, policy analyst at CAP and co-author of the report.
Read the report: “The Pathway to Industrial Decarbonization” by Mike Williams and Auburn Bell
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