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The Challenge

Green Steel – the question is not ‘is it possible’, but rather ‘how to make it possible’.

This MRIWA Challenge aims to map the pathway to enable Western Australia to maximise use of its magnetite and hematite iron ore resources and emerging hydrogen and renewable energy potential to support the global green steel ambitions, creating new markets and industries for this state.

Context

With the steel industry causing 7% of global CO2 emissions, there is a significant focus on the development of green steel to reduce this.

Western Australia has significant under-utilised magnetite resources and a potential green hydrogen production capacity which would enable the state to participate in the emerging green steel industry.

There are multiple scenarios along a continuum through which Western Australia could do this, including:

  1. Continuing to export iron ore; creating green hydrogen and exporting overseas for steel making;
  2. Producing direct-reduced iron locally, initially using gas-based direct reduction then subsequently through hydrogen direct reduction, and exporting overseas to be refined to steel;
  3. Producing steel locally, exporting semi-finished products for overseas fabrication.

These scenarios are not mutually exclusive and establish a development pathway for Western Australia.

The lead time for Western Australia to capture this emerging opportunity means there is a need to start now to enable the state to have a comprehensive understanding of the ore characterisation, policy and incentive frameworks, land availability and capabilities needed.

Call to Action

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Page was last reviewed 21 October 2020

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