ENERGY & ENVIRONMENT MANAGEMENT IN STEEL SECTOR
Environment Management in Iron & Steel sector
Iron & steel industry in India are covered under the Environment Protection Act (EPA) as well as Environment Protection Rules & Regulations enacted & published by Ministry of Environment & Forest (MoEF&CC). At the beginning, the entrepreneurs are required to obtain statutory clearances from the Union/State Governments required under the EPA for setting up of any new iron & steel plants or its substantial expansion. Further, the steel companies are required to install specified pollution control equipments/facilities and also operate well within the prescribed Standards/Norms in respect of air, water and noise pollutions as also solid waste generation & utilization. These are monitored by Central/State Pollution Control Boards. MOS helps & facilitates formulation/amendment of Norms and standards.
Energy consumption in most of the integrated steel plants in India is generally high at 6-6.5 Giga Calorie per tonne of crude steel as compared to 4.5-5.0 in steel plants abroad. The higher rate of energy consumption is mainly due to obsolete technologies including problems in retrofitting modern technologies in old plants, old shop floor & operating practices, poor quality of raw material viz. high ash coal/coke, high alumina iron ore etc. The energy consumption in steel plants is however, gradually reducing because of technological upgradation, utilisation of waste heats, use of better quality inputs, etc.
The Government/ Ministry of Steel, through various schemes and regulations, is facilitating reduction in energy consumption and emission of environment pollution in steel plants. Some of the steps /initiatives being taken through various forums and mechanisms are:
Steps/ Initiatives taken by the Government/ industry:
Charter on Corporate Responsibility for Environment Protection (CREP)
This is an initiative of Ministry of Environment & Forests/ Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) in association with Ministry of Steel and the main/ major steel plants to reduce environment pollution, water consumption, energy consumption, solid waste & hazardous waste management etc as per mutually agreed targets with the purpose to go beyond the compliance of regulatory norms for prevention & control of pollution through various measures including waste minimization, in-plant process control & adoption of clean technologies. A National Task Force (NTF) has been formed for implementation of CREP recommendations. Ministry of Steel facilitates compliance of CREP action points in association with the steel plants. National Task Force (NTF) has recently been reconstituted
National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC)
National Action Plan for Climate Change (NAPCC) has been launched in 2008 to address the Challenge at national level. NAPCC outlines 8 National Missions, one of them being the National Mission for Enhanced Energy Efficiency (NMEEE). Perform Achieve & Trade (PAT) is the flagship scheme under NMEEE. PAT is a market based mechanism through certifications of energy savings which could be traded. PAT has become effective from April 2012.
The PAT Scheme has so far covered 163 numbers of Iron & Steel Units in India (referred as Designated Consumers). The threshold limit of energy consumption of 20,000 tonnes of oil equivalent (toe) per year has been marked as the cut-off limit criterion for any unit in the iron & steel sector to be identified as designated consumer. The methodology of setting targets for designated consumers is based on reduction of specific energy consumption (SEC) on a gate to-gate (GtG) basis. The Indian steel industry overall has achieved the targets for reduction in energy consumption in PAT Cycle 1&2.
Promotion of Energy Efficiency in SME Sector:
UNDP-GEF-MoS Project: “Energy Efficiency in Steel Re-rolling Mills” (2004-2013):
The project has been completed and implemented. It has facilitated low carbon technologies in 34 steel re-rolling mills (model units) to bring down energy consumption and reduce GHG emissions by 25-50%. This has helped in replication of the energy efficient technological interventions in many other steel re-rolling mills.
UNDP-MoS-AusAID Project: Up scaling Energy Efficient Production in Small Scale Steel Industry in India” (June 2013-June2016)
Further replicated energy efficiency in steel re-rolling mills and expanded the interventions to other SME Sector like induction furnaces. The project is completed covering 321 mini steel mills (inclusive of 5 Induction furnace units at an investment of 50 Crore from private sector against Rs. 20 crore of funding from Ministry of Steel, AusAid and UNDP. These units adopted Energy Efficiency Technologies and reduced specific energy consumption by 20% to 30%. The interventions reduced about 400,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide annually. Subsequently, the industry is self replicating these technologies with their own funding.
NEDO Model Projects for Energy Efficiency Improvement:
Government of Japan through Ministry of Economy Trade & Industry provides funds i.e as Overseas Development Aid (ODA) under its Green Aid Plan (GAP) through Department of Economic Affairs in GOI for setting up of energy efficient, environment friendly projects known as Model Projects in various sectors including steel. These projects are routed through and managed by NEDO (New Energy & industrial technology Development Organisation), Japan. Ministry of Steel is coordinating the projects undertaken in the iron & steel sector. So far the following three projects have been commissioned, two at Tata Steel and one project at RINL.
Further, one more Model Project viz. Energy Monitoring and Management System at ISP Burnpur, SAIL is under implementation.
Iron & Steel Slag Utilization:
The major wastes produced in integrated steel plants include BF Iron Slag Steel Melting Shop (SMS) Slag accounting for nearly more than half a ton for each ton of steel produced in ISPs. Most of the steel plants are utilising 100% of the iron slag produced (mostly in cement making and some portion as aggregate, both of which are permitted in BIS or IRC Standards Specifications) while others are closer to reach the 100% utilization.
The utilisation of SMS (particularly LD) slag is limited due to its
The steel industry is finding ways and means to utilize the steel slag in other applications like construction & road making, soil conditioning, rail ballast. However there are problems and issues. The steel slag need to be properly aged and ground to very fine size before it can be explored to be utilised, which incur substantial cost. There are lack of guidelines for use of steel slag as replacement of natural aggregates in construction activities and road-making. Use of aggregates in Rail Ballast is governed by RDSO standards. However, the RDSO standards do not presently allow use of iron and steel slag. Steel industry is pursuing the matter with RDSO.
Ministry of Steel is funding the following R&D projects for promoting utilisation of steel slag in various end uses:
Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) for Indian Steel Industry:
Government of India has submitted India’s Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) to reduce the emissions intensity of its GDP by 33 to 35 percent by the year 2030 from the level of the year 2005. Accordingly, Ministry of Steel has submitted NDCs for iron and steel in sector to MOEF&CC to reduce GHG emission by adopting clean and green technologies
Key highlights of the progress achieved by India in reducing GHG emissions as brought out in the Biennial Update Report (BUR-3) prepared by MoEF&CC are as under:
Some of the highlights of the achievement of the steel industry are given below: