THE PATH TO A CLIMA-NEUTRAL AMAG IN 2040
AMAG has been a leader in aluminum scrap recycling for many years. Thanks to its expertise in this area, AMAG is already making a significant contribution to its goal of climate-neutral products. With this mind, AMAG's plan is to further expand its position as a leader in terms of capacity and expertise.
The European Union's targets stipulate that industry must achieve climate-neutral production as of 2050. In Austria, this target will apply from 2040. That means less than 20 years remain to implement this major transformation. As a result, AMAG has developed a comprehensive plan detailing how this will be achieved at the Ranshofen site.
Energy efficiency is another area that has long been a focus of AMAG's activities. Many steps have been taken - including major ones, such as heat recovery from the cooling water of the continuous casting lines. In any case, all the "low-hanging fruit" has long since been picked. Efforts in this direction will continue, but no more major developments should be expected. AMAG's current annual energy consumption in Ranshofen is around 750 GWh, which breaks down as approximately 250 GWh of electricity and 500 GWh of natural gas. Around 100,000 metric tons of CO2 are emitted in the process. Already since 2018 AMAG obtains 100% of its electricity from renewable energy. The solar power system that has just been put into operation further contributes to climate-neutral electricity generation. The major challenge in the coming years will therefore be replacing fossil fuels with climate-neutral alternative energy sources.
Climate-neutral production will be technically an organizationally feasible for AMAG, assuming that green electricity and green hydrogen are provided in sufficient quantities by external suppliers. Five fields of action work in parallel to pave the way for climate neutrality: extensive research activities, further energy efficiency improvements, the necessary adjustments to the equipment infrastructure, screening the supply chain for scope 3 emissions, and, most importantly, replacing fossil fuels.
The AMAG plan envisages a gradual switchover of natural-gas-fired plants to climate-neutral operation. With this plan, it will be possible to maintain the absolute level of emissions at the current level until 2030, despite a significant increase in volume (meaning specifically that emissions will already have decreased significantly), and to achieve zero CO2 emissions in absolute terms by 2040. Although AMAG already operates the most state-of-the-art plant in the West, everyone needs to understand that this switchover to climate-neutral production will entail investments of several hundred million euros, and a great number of European companies will face a similar situation and require similar levels of investments. Therefore, it is important for European policymakers to ensure planning security and established general conditions that facilitate fair international competitions.
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