Jyotiraditya Scindia, the Union Minister of Steel, has called for enhancing scrap usage in primary steel production from 15 per cent to 50 per cent by 2047. He pointed out that 22 per cent of the country’s steel is produced through recycling and there is a need to include the informal sector to increase the production of steel from scrap.

“It is our commitment that by 2030 we should reduce CO2 emissions by 50 per cent from the current 2.85 to 1.4 CO2/tonne of crude steel produced and to be able to do that scrap is an extremely important source. The percentage of scrap usage will increase to almost 25 per cent from the current 15 per cent in the next 5 years with the Vision of 2047, which means the percentage of scrap for production of steel should go up to 50 per cent and only 50 per cent should be dependent on iron ore”, the Minister said.

Addressing the plenary session of the International Indian Material Recycling Conference organised by Material Recycling Association of India in Kochi, he said “I am fully committed to the circular economy and recycling sector of India and increasing the per capita consumption of steel”. “Scrap is a virtuous word that denotes a green economy to sustain Mother Earth in the years to come. It is also important to incentivise the unorganized sector so that we have volumes towards the commitment of the future of recycling,” the Minister said. 

Carbon nuetrality

The conclave focussed on highlighting a deeper insight into maximizing the rate of recycling, protecting natural resources, minimising environmental pollution, creating more employment opportunities and helping achieve the sustainable development goal of India’s commitment of carbon neutrality by 2070.

Sanjay Mehta, President, MRAI urged the government to enhance the usage of secondary steel in government infrastructure projects, announce circular economy recycling parks and appropriate policies for its implementation which will gain importance in 2023. From sustainable development and climate change mitigation considerations, it is important that recycling is given clear focus and strong impetus in the industry sector. The recycling industry is highly unorganised and is worth about $50 billion now. There are over 25,000 recycling units in the country, he said.