German heavy industry powerhouse NRW launches initiative to curb industry emissions
The German federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), the country’s most populous state and home to numerous emissions-intensive heavy industries, has launched an initiative to examine options for bringing down industry’s carbon footprint, the NRW energy ministry says in a press release. The state’s economy and energy minister, Andreas Pinkwart of the pro-business FDP party, said NRW had to employ its “innovative spirit” to make sure the state contributes to emissions reduction targets while maintaining its industrial competitiveness. Over the next four years, industrial companies, researchers, and the state government will work on the initiative dubbed IN4climate.NRW to find ways to make production processes more sustainable, for example for steel or coal products. Andreas Gross, CEO of steel company thyssenkrupp Steel Europe, said steel was “no old-economy but high-tech” and a necessary input factor for many energy transition technologies, which is why the company would be open to any innovative solution that makes its production less CO2-intensive.
See the CLEW dossier The energy transition’s effects on the economy for background.