Brazil on track to decarbonise heavy industry

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FILE PHOTO: An Embraer E195-E2 aircraft is displayed at the 54th International Paris Air Show at Le Bourget Airport near Paris, France, June 20, 2023. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier/File Photo

Brazil aims to spearhead a momentous decarbonisation effort in challenging sectors such as steel, aluminum, and aviation. The country, with its rich natural resources and commitment to a 50% emissions reduction by 2030, is strategically focusing on these hard-to-abate industries.

While challenges persist, Brazil’s multifaceted approach, blending technology, policy, and finance, positions it on the cusp of a revolutionary global green industry transformation. The First Movers Coalition (FMC) organised a workshop in Brazil, believing Brazil could be a pioneer in best practices for green industries, bringing together over 100 experts to deliberate on decarbonisation in key industries.

Aviation currently contributes approximately 2% of global CO2 emissions, and its impact is anticipated to escalate in the coming years. In the aviation sector, Brazil is positioned to excel in sustainable aviation fuel production, leveraging its biofuel expertise and extensive aviation infrastructure.

Brazil’s aluminium industry, already a low-carbon leader globally, benefits from Brazil’s abundant bauxite reserves and utilising clean energy sources like hydropower and biomass fuels promises further emissions reductions.

Last but not least, steel production stands as one of the most carbon-intensive industries globally, contributing approximately 7% to annual greenhouse gas emissions. Yet steel plays a crucial role in technologies essential for decarbonisation, including wind turbines, electric vehicles, and advanced manufacturing processes.

Boasting the largest iron ore reserves outside Australia, Brazil also benefits from vast freshwater and renewable energy resources, critical for generating green hydrogen (H2)—a potential game-changer in decarbonising steelmaking.

Brazil is making strides in its pursuit of low- and zero-emission production and fast becoming a global leader in heavy industries’ decarbonisation efforts.

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