Green steel: Forging a new industry in Australia

Presented by ANU College of Science

Australia is the world number one exporter of both the iron ore and the metallurgical coal required to make the world's steel, much of which takes place in China, India and Japan. Australia's economy depends strongly on the income from these sectors, but at the same time, the Iron and Steel sector produces large amounts of greenhouse gases and will be increasingly in focus as countries seek to address the climate emergency and to meet their Paris Agreement targets.

This talk will outline several exciting technologies currently under development to transition from the currently dominant steelmaking technology, the blast furnace and basic oxygen furnace, to new approaches that are no longer dependent on the combustion of fossil fuels.

Much of Australia's iron ore happens to be located in one of the world's best areas for renewable energy resources: the Pilbara. Can Australia forge a new Green Steel industry, based in the Pilbara, which is globally competitive in our future carbon-constrained world? What would it take, and what should we be doing to take the idea forward?


5.30pm Welcome by Prof Ken Baldwin, Director, ANU Energy Change Institute

5.35pm Keynote speaker Dr John Pye

6.05pm Panel discussion moderated by Dr Emma Aisbett, Associate Director (Research), Zero-Carbon Energy for the Asia-Pacific, ANU.

  • Peter Haenke, Director, Strategy, ARENA
  • Andrew Dickson, CWP Renewables
  • Nick Birbilis, Deputy Dean, College of Engineering and Computer Science, ANU.

6.30pm Q&A

7.00pm Refreshments and networking

7.30pm Close

This event is part of 'Energy Conversations', a series of ongoing public events, run by the ANU Energy Change Institute and the Canberra branch of the Australian Institute of Energy (AIE).

About Dr John Pye

John Pye is a senior lecturer at the Australian National University with a BE/BSc in mechanical engineering and mathematics from the University of Melbourne and a PhD in solar thermal energy from UNSW in Sydney. Since 2006 he has worked at ANU on developing technology for high-temperature solar-thermal systems and components, including the design, fabrication and testing of a 97%-efficient 550°C solar boiler, design of systems for solar gasification of biomass for fuel production, and developing systems for large-scale thermal energy storage. He has been a core contributor in the Australian Solar Thermal Research Institute (ASTRI) and leads the System Modelling activity in that program. Recently, he has joined an ANU 'Grand Challenge' initiative named Zero-Carbon Energy for the Asia-Pacific, with the proposal to develop pathways for the fully carbon-neutral production of iron and steel, and develops and teaches a new masters course on Industrial Energy Efficiency at ANU.