Consistently improving energy efficiency
For thyssenkrupp, the efficient use of resources and energy is a key competitive factor, a driver of innovation, and a central factor in environmental protection.
thyssenkrupp implements systematic energy management in its production and service processes. This helps conserve resources and reduce energy costs. It also delivers a major contribution to climate protection. With energy consumption of almost 73 terawatt hours (TWh) worldwide in fiscal year 2016/2017, maximizing energy efficiency also makes good business sense.
Groupwide Energy Efficiency Program
The Groupwide Energy Efficiency Program (GEEP) is aimed at achieving sustainable efficiency gains of 3.5 TWh by fiscal 2019/2020. This is one of seven Indirect Financial Targets at thyssenkrupp.
Since the launch of the program in 2013/2014, gains of 2.75 TWh have already been achieved through site-related projects, for example, improved utilization of waste heat, reduction of standby times, and replacement of plant components. A major contribution has been made by the Steel business area: The efficiency gains achieved can avoid around 0.8 million tons of CO2 emissions per year.
The basis and prerequisite for these efficiency gains is systematic energy management in our production and service processes. Group companies with relevant energy consumption must therefore additionally align their energy management with the requirements of the ambitious ISO 50001 standard, again by fiscal 2019/2020. Of the more than 50 companies concerned, a quarter already met these requirements in the reporting year. Related to annual energy consumption, ISO 50001 is roughly 90 percent implemented.
Continuous improvement process
To support the continuous improvement process, regular efficiency and benchmark analyses are carried out. For example plant inspections are performed to identify optimization potential and develop solutions. By learning from each other we can ensure that these findings are quickly used at other sites. For this reason, regular expert workshops are held to promote knowledge sharing, for example at annual Energy Efficiency Days.
Energy consumption levels and breakdown
The biggest individual consumer of energy at thyssenkrupp is steel production. Most of this energy comes in the form of coal and coke, used as reducing agents in chemical-physical reaction processes to transform iron ore into pig iron.
The integrated iron and steel mills of the Group are organized as an “energy network” to optimize the use of energy across the different plant units. For example, byproduct gases, waste heat, and steam generated in the production processes are recovered and reused in the plant. The energy network is continuously optimized in connection with our efficiency programs.