Steel Climate Standard Makes It Easy to Identify Low-Emissions Steel

WASHINGTON — The Global Steel Climate Council (GSCC) today published the Steel Climate Standard, a fair, effective, unbiased way to measure and report greenhouse gas emissions in the global steel industry. The Steel Manufacturers Association (SMA) is a founding member of the GSCC.

The standard provides a single, technology-agnostic framework for steel product certification. It allows all steel customers to know the carbon emissions associated with the steel products they buy. And it creates an industry standard for achieving the emissions reduction goals in the Paris Climate Agreement by 2050.

“The Steel Climate Standard measures carbon emissions for all steel the same way, no matter where or how it was made,” said SMA President Philip K. Bell. “That approach makes it easy for steel buyers to determine which steel has the lowest embodied carbon. That’s important because automakers, appliance manufacturers, construction firms, governments, and other buyers of steel need to know how much embodied carbon is in all the material they use in their own products and projects.”

Global policymakers are considering a dual standard for emissions, with one standard for steel made from coal and iron ore and another for steel made from recycled scrap. That would be a mistake. A dual standard rewards high-emission steelmakers, harms the environment, and eliminates any incentive for coal-fired steelmakers to change their production process.

“No steel should be called clean, green, low-carbon, or responsible if its production generates four or five times as many greenhouse gas emissions as the same steel made by a competitor with a cleaner process,” Bell added. “Steelmakers whose products have higher carbon intensity will have to change their processes to meet the Steel Climate Standard. And that must happen if we are to meet global emissions reduction goals in time to prevent catastrophic climate change.”

About the SMA

SMA is the largest steel industry trade association in the United States and is the primary trade association representing North American EAF steel producers. EAF steelmakers account for almost 70 percent of domestic steelmaking capacity using an innovative, 21st-century production process that is less energy-intensive and has lower carbon emissions than traditional steelmaking. For more information, check out our website at or our LinkedIn page.