Steel products can pose a significant environmental burden during their manufacture, use and disposal. These environmental aspects include, but are not limited to the energy use and the ensuing carbon emissions during production. The steel industry is a major contributor to worldwide carbon emissions. Hazardous chemicals in the steel production, galvanising and coating processes need to be managed to minimise the risks of emissions to soil, air and water.
The Steel and Steel Products (SSPv1.0-2019) standard seeks to define good environmental performance benchmarks for steel and steel products throughout their entire life cycle.
The scope of the standard includes the extraction of raw materials, the production of steel as well as refinement processes, such as coating or galvanising of steel products.
The steel industry is known for a high recycling rate, as recycled steel can maintain a high material quality. This has led to significant energy efficiency gains over the years. The main production routes are the blast furnace/basic oxygen furnace on the one hand and the electric arc furnace, which melts recycled steel scrap to form new steel, on the other hand.
There are steel producers in Australia, but the majority of steel is imported from a range of overseas countries
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