Earlier this week, more than 30 people gathered at Birdsong Brewing in Charlotte, NC for the launch of Stainless: The 100% Clean Energy Steel Campaign. The campaign aims to transition the steel industry to 100 percent clean energy for its electricity supply, starting with Nucor Corporation, the largest steel producer in the United States.
Supporters were energized by speeches from clean energy advocates June Blotnick, Executive Director of Clean Air Carolina; Dimple Ajmera, Charlotte City Councilwoman at-large; Nakisa Glover, founder of local environmental justice group Sol Nation; and Margaret Hansbrough, Campaign Director at Mighty Earth.
“With Nucor Steel’s national headquarters in Charlotte, we are here to urge the largest steel company in the country to move away from carbon-based fuels to meet their massive demand for electricity, and towards a clean energy future using carbon-free renewable energy. We need them to be a leader,” Blotnick said.
“It is about time to ask Nucor and their leadership team to help us reach our sustainability goals but more importantly to continue to be competitive in the industry,” said Ajmera, who started her address by highlighting the campaign’s alignment with Charlotte’s clean energy goals.
Nucor has operations in 25 states. It uses electricity-intensive electric arc furnaces (EAFs) to turn scrap metal into new steel, a method used to produce 68 percent of steel in the United States. Because domestic EAFs source their electricity from the fossil fuel-dominated grid, they emit 11.1 million metric tons of CO2 per year. By committing to clean energy, Nucor and other steel companies can eliminate these emissions.
Hansbrough said, “This is a win-win-win issue. It is good for Nucor, it is good for North Carolina and every state that Nucor operates in, and it is good for the planet.”
[aesop_gallery id=”55486″ revealfx=”off” overlay_revealfx=”off”]