Last year ThyssenKrupp Steel Europe launched a new energy efficiency program to further reduce energy costs at all its production locations.
The results of the saving measures are impressive. The potential identified so far at the Siegerland, Bochum and Dortmund sites alone amounts to some 12.5 million euros and will reduce CO2 emissions by 78,000 tons by the end of the implementation phase in 2014. Linked to this is a reduction in energy requirements by 300,000 megawatt hours of electricity – equivalent to the annual power and heat consumption of 10,000 households or the CO2 absorption capacity of almost 2.6 million trees.
Measures focus on equipment and employees
95 percent of the energy savings are to be achieved through equipment modifications, for which investment of around eight million euros will be needed. For example, plant units will be switched off automatically when not in use and the operating temperatures of the coating lines will be reduced. Further measures include the replacement of existing shop heating systems with natural gas heating, the upgrading of insulation, reducing the capacity of pumps in the cooling systems and intensifying coolant recycling. But there is also significant energy-saving potential in a number of smaller measures which each individual employee can actively support – such as turning down the heating in the office or “economizing” on the opening of entrance gates.
Duisburg: Further savings potential available
Including the Duisburg location, which only began to implement the program on two units in December 2010, a savings potential of over 14 million euros has been identified to date. Given that a whole range of energy-intensive facilities are operated in the hot metal phase of steel production in Duisburg, the project managers here are expecting further potential savings running into millions.
Result since 2009: 45 million euros saved
“We are proud that including the new program we have saved the staggering total of almost 45 million euros in energy alone since 2009,” says Dr. Ulrich Jaroni, director of production at ThyssenKrupp Steel Europe AG. “Our new program to increase energy efficiency has been developed for the longer term so that we can systematically continue along the path we started out on two years ago. In view of the continuously increasing energy and raw materials prices worldwide, the savings will benefit not only the company but also the environment”. The program is to be permanently incorporated into the continuous improvement process at ThyssenKrupp Steel Europe AG.