Is Steel ‘Crucial’ To the Future of Green Energy?

Chris Huhne MP. Image Source: Public Domain.

A recent article posted by This is South Wales features a profile on Chris Huhne, the British Energy and Climate Change Secretary.  Huhne argues that the UK steel industry must become a pivotal player in the “green energy revolution”, arguing that the connection between big steel in the UK and green innovation is “crucial”.

Huhne’s comments are in response to proposed tax policies in the UK, which have the potential to raise the costs of generating electricity.  This would have a huge impact on energy-intensive industries such as steel. Since steel produced in other countries would not be subjected to these taxes, it has been widely feared that the new levy would make UK steel less competitive in the world market.

Mr. Huhne has announced that is working with the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills to create a package that will benefit energy-intensive industries, the steel industry being among them.

Part of this package will include an investment in green energy technologies which will allow UK steelmakers to keep their costs down, thus ensuring that the “demand for steel and aluminum stays in the United Kingdom.”

The UK steel industry has expressed an interest in working with the government to help develop these new technologies, with a view towards both helping to keep UK steel competitive, while addressing the important climate change issue.

While steel is an environmentally-friendly product that is a popular building product for LEED-certified buildings, it does take a lot of energy to produce the product.  It is interesting to see how the UK’s desire to tackle climate change will affect the UK steel industry, as well as the innovative technologies that will be borne out of these recent policy shifts.

Click here to read more about the proposed tax policy in the UK, as well as to read more about Chris Huhne’s comments.


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