In North America, 11 of ArcelorMittals facilities are directly adjacent to the Great Lakes. Because this region is where many of the companys employees live and work, the company says that it is imperative that it participates in the protection and restoration of the Great Lakes natural resources. For many years, the company has worked in various public-private partnerships and spearheaded stakeholder engagement to ensure the Great Lakes region represents excellence in land and water conservation.
Through ArcelorMittals partnerships with Sustain Our Great Lakes (SOGL) Chi-Cal Rivers Fund, and its new initiative in the Detroit area, the company directly provides funding in communities where it operates. While SOGL funding is deployed in every Great Lakes state, ArcelorMittal is particularly involved in the work it does in Cleveland, Ohio, Chicago, Illinois and Northwest Indiana.
In Northwest Indiana, recipients of SOGL funding include Shirley Heinze Land Trust, Save the Dunes, and The Nature Conservancy, among others. Each of these three partners are also involved in the ArcelorMittal-led initiative, Calumet Land Conservation Partnership. This partnership involves two funding partners ArcelorMittal and the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation and eight environmental NGOs to deploy landscape scale conservation strategy on-the-ground in the Calumet region (Chicago and Northwest Indiana).
In addition, ArcelorMittal extends its commitment to restoration and environmental excellence to schools all over Northwest Indiana with its Mighty Acorns program, deployed by the Indiana Dunes Environmental Learning Center and others. Each year, fourth through sixth graders in Northwest Indiana join its own volunteers both on and off ArcelorMittal sites to learn about invasive-species removal, land and water restoration and environmental excellence in manufacturing.
It is important to ArcelorMittal that its environmental partnerships focus on a 360-degree view of the environment from restoration and protection to educating the next generation of environmental leaders to do the same in their communities. Its engagement in its communities reflect these commitments.
Since 2006, Sustain Our Great Lakes has awarded 264 grants worth over $60 million in federal and corporate partner funding. Grantees matched this funding with an additional $65.2 million, for a total conservation investment of over $125 million.
Big River Steel
Big River Steel, Osceola, Arkansas, has been committed to creating a positive impact on the environment since it began constructing its mill. In March 2017 the company lived up to that commitment by becoming the first LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified steel production facility in the United States. LEED certified buildings are designed, constructed, and operated with a focus on environmental and human health attributes. The use of variable-speed motors throughout the compact strip production (CSP) process along with the installation of a comprehensive set of energy-saving tools throughout the operation were the major factors that led to Big River Steel earning its LEED certification. In addition to its mill building, the steelmakers employee services building and warehouse also received LEED certifications.
Big River Steels Osceola Flex Mill was built to meet not only domestic regulations but even stricter European environmental standards. During construction of the campus, approximately 35% of the building materials were extracted, harvested
and manufactured within 500 miles of the site.
Big River says that it uses 30% less water and 18% less energy than other compact steel production (CSP) technology. The steelmakers electric arc furnace (EAF) uses a hydraulic power roof system, which reduces heat loss to a fraction of traditional roof systems. Drives and motors throughout the mill conserve energy by idling at much lower speeds than traditional steel
mills, which run non-stop at full horsepower.
The company is actively working to improve the environment of its community and beyond. Water treatment is one good example of its commitment to environmental stewardship. After water is pumped from wells to cool steel, it is sent to an on-site energy-efficient wastewater treatment facility, which returns it to the Mississippi River cleaner than before. The company has also mitigated or added over 23 acres of wetlands to the mill site and planted over five acres of trees.
Bobs Metals, Inc
Bobs Metals, Inc, Portland, Oregon (BMI) has made a significant investment in the environmental stewardship of its recycling operations. In November 2017, BMI completed a multi-year site-wide environmental improvement project that consisted of installing a 300 gallon per minute electrocoagulation stormwater treatment system and constructing a new Green Globes certified headquarters and warehouse building.
Owing to the location of BMIs facility near the Columbia Slough waterway, stormwater management and cleanliness is a top priority. The Columbia Slough is approximately nineteen miles long and runs westward to its confluence with the Willamette River and is home to a variety of wildlife. Unfortunately, this waterway has been a source of pollution over the last century of industrial activity. For this reason, soon after BMI purchased the site in 2007, the company committed to the design and implementation of a stormwater treatment system and several best management practices.
BMI collects stormwater runoff from its fourteen-acre site and uses enhanced filtration technology to remove total suspended solids, heavy metals, emulsified oils, bacteria and other contaminants before injecting treated stormwater back into the ground through an Underground Infiltration Gallery below the scrap yard, which was approved by the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality to protect freshwater aquifers and eliminate any off-site discharges.
BMIs facility is one of the only scrap metal recycling operations in the United States to have a fully contained zero-discharge site and the company feels this gives it a competitive advantage in the marketplace. BMI invested over $2.6 million dollars in its stormwater treatment system and over $4 million dollars into its headquarters building and additional site development.
Liberty Iron & Metal, Inc
Under the direction of Michael Diamond, CEO, and Bill Heitzenrater, corporate EHS manager, and their consultant, AFI Environmental, Liberty Iron and Metal, Incs operating arm, Diamond Hurwitz Scrap LLC (DHS), entered the NYSDEC Brownfield Cleanup Program for two sites located in Buffalo, New York. In addition, a third site is also in the application process. These sites were historic scrap yard sites, some with documented scrap operations dating back to the early 1900s. All sites were known to be impacting groundwater with VOCs, SVOCs, PCBs and metals.
Liberty has invested in excess of $3.8 million through 2017 and has committed in excess of $5.6 million to restore these facilities to their pre-disposal conditions. These sites (three to date) are all part of a joint effort with the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation, NYS Department of Health and local government, along with citizen and community participation and comment.
The remedial design program undertaken included green remediation principles and techniques. The major green remediation considerations at the site for this program were: the environmental impacts of treatment technologies and remedy stewardship over the long-term; reducing direct and indirect greenhouse gases and other fugitive emissions; increasing energy efficiencies and minimizing use of non-renewable energy; conserving and efficiently managing resources and materials; reducing waste, increasing recycling, and increasing reuse of materials which would otherwise be considered waste; maximizing habitat value and creating habitat where and when possible. In addition: fostering green and healthy communities and working landscapes which balance ecological and economic and social goals; and integrating the final remedy for the site with the end use where possible and encouraging future green and sustainable re-development.
A certificate of completion (COC) was issued by the joint actions of the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation and NYS Department of Health.
To demonstrate the companys commitment to the environment, in 2016, SSAB Americas launched the EcoSmart program as a way of making people more aware of the environmental sustainability of its steel. EcoSmart was launched to many of the companys large customers throughout 2016, and continued to be rolled out to more in 2017. The program enables customers to know more about what makes the companys steel sustainable, and then use this information in turn with their own customers.
Customers who have been onboarded to the EcoSmart program receive the EcoSmart imprint on their products and customized documentation like test reports and invoices.
To produce its steel, SSAB Americas uses recovered scrap metal nearly 97% recycled materials. Annually, its mills recycle more than three million pounds of scrap.
SSAB produces, processes and sells high-quality steel across North America with facilities in Texas, Minnesota, Iowa, Alabama and Ontario, Canada. It says that it is constantly working to improve the way it does business to ensure the company is making a positive impact on its employees, communities, customers and the environment.
Over the past five years, SSAB Americas has focused on six key ongoing projects to achieve its goals in environmental responsibility: scrap tire recycling; scrap metal waste recycling; waste management general trash; EAF baghouse dust recycling; refractory brick recycling; and energy efficiency projects. Combined, the six key projects have not only made a significant environmental impact, but also have saved the company more than $6 million.
SSAB says the results of its initiatives have been outstanding, from less waste being sent to landfills, to less energy consumption and more materials being recycled.
Big wins have included more than 4.3 million pounds of trash being diverted from landfills, more than six million scrap tires recycled, reduced consumption of electricity in certain areas by 75% due to new lighting, and more than 240,000 tons of EAF baghouse dust being recycled.
TimkenSteel is known as one of the largest recyclers in Stark County, Ohio, recycling up to 2 million tons of scrap metal or the equivalent of 1.35 million automobiles each year. In 2010, the company developed an innovative tire recycling program to help keep used and spent tires out of landfills. With continued enhancement to the program since then, in 2017, TimkenSteel received a special permit from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency to expand its scope to include even more tire processing capabilities at a subsidiary facility. In 2017 alone, this program has kept 1,336 tons of used tires the equivalent of more than 121,000 passenger tires out of landfills by recycling them in the steelmaking process.
This recycling program allows TimkenSteel to partially replace traditional fuel sources such as coal in its steelmaking process and reuses valuable metal content contained in the tires. For TimkenSteel, using this alternative feedstock in the steelmaking process offers the opportunity to reduce dependence on traditional carbon-intense fossil fuels.
In 2017, the company turned 1.7 million tons of scrap metal into some of the worlds cleanest and highest-performing grades of steel. In 2017, TimkenSteel also cut waste-to-landfill per production ton by more than 8%; recycled 1.7 million tons of scrap steel, saving 2.4 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions; and recycled the effluent dust from steelmaking furnaces (in excess of 16,000 tons in 2017).
The company also reduced the amount of electricity used in steelmaking operations by 10%; continued year-over-year reduction in carbon emissions; participated with Ohio EPAs director in a forum focused on industrial-scale recycling in Ohio; cleaned and recycled more than 8 billion gallons of water.
On Earth Day the company provided employees with 400 sapling trees to plant at their homes and in their communities. It has also received ISO-14001 (2015 standard) recertification, which has a strong emphasis on sustainability and management participation. And it has shared environmental knowledge in a meeting with Ohio regulatory agencies and other leading large-scale industrial recyclers.