Global aluminum industry must cut greenhouse gas emissions by 2050; IAI

By Shilpa Annie Joseph, Trainee Reporter
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The International Aluminium Institute (IAI) has stated that the global aluminum industry must reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 77 percent by 2050 to achieve climate change targets, mainly through shifting to green electricity.

“The challenge for us and for many sectors is reducing those emissions while growing production to meet demand,” said Chris Bayliss, Deputy Secretary-General at IAI, in an online statement.

According to the report released by the industry group, energy used to smelt raw materials into lightweight metal accounts for around 60 percent of aluminum emissions.

By 2050, demand for aluminum is expected to increase by 80 percent to about 180 million tons of semi-fabricated goods, partially due to its use in electric cars, “green buildings,” and power cabling, stated Mr. Bayliss.

However, he further noted that the aluminum industry must find ways to reduce CO2 emissions from current levels of 1.1 billion tons to 250 million tons by 2050. If nothing is done, they are expected to grow to 1.6 billion by the same year.

China, which is both the world’s largest aluminum producer and a major coal user, is responsible for a significant portion of the emissions, as per the reports.

“But even producers that make so-called “green aluminum” with hydropower will also need to reduce emissions to meet global climate change goals,” he further added. For example, “process” emissions, such as those resulting from the use of carbon anodes in smelting, account for around 15 percent of total emissions.

“Recycling aluminum causes scant emissions, so finding ways to collect the 7 million tons of metal that is not currently recycled is another strategy,” Mr. Bayliss concluded.

International Aluminium Institute

Founded in 1972, the International Aluminium Institute (IAI) is the association of aluminum producers, representing more than 60 percent of global aluminum production. Through the IAI, the aluminum industry intends to demonstrate its contribution to sustainable development by producing, using and recycling its goods responsibly.

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